Osteoporosis of the Spine
What is it?
There is a natural process in bones whereby bone is continually made and removed. When more bone is removed than is made, bone density reduces and this leads to the condition known as Osteoporosis. It is more common in women than in men. In women it is linked to hormone changes – a hormone is a substance produced by the body which exerts a specific effect on cell activity. In men, the cause is not as yet understood but may be linked to genetic factors.
The disease itself is not painful but problems associated with it, such as fractures, are. There may be restriction of movement in the spine. As the vertebral bodies (the individual bones of the spine) weaken they begin to wedge and become narrower at the front than at the back. This causes the spine to become more bent forwards and the individual develops a “stooped” posture.
Fabric Lumbar Sacral Orthosis (LSO) or a semi-rigid spinal brace may provide some mechanical support to the spine and reduce the deforming forces on the spinal column.