In today's post, we'll explore osteoporosis, a frequently debilitating condition that affects millions of Americans, and which will likely continue to pose a major health concern in the coming years thanks to the nation's aging baby boomer population.
What exactly is osteoporosis?
If you were to undertake a microscopic examination of an otherwise healthy bone, you would notice that the surface appeared honeycombed, or dotted with various spaces and holes.
If you were to conduct this same examination on a bone affected by osteoporosis, you would notice that these spaces and holes were far more pronounced. Indeed, the meaning of osteoporosis is "porous bone."
Why does it matter if the surface of the bone is more porous?
More pronounced spaces and holes in the surface of the bone means a loss of bone density. This is significant because the lower a person's bone density is, the higher the chances that their bones will become weak, and subject to breaks in minor accidents or even everyday activities.
How common is osteoporosis?
According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, close to 54 million people are currently diagnosed with osteoporosis or low bone density, which means they have an elevated risk of developing osteoporosis.
Older people are most at risk of developing osteoporosis. However, it's important to understand that contrary to popular belief, it's not just women who develop the condition. Indeed, statistics show that one in two women and one in four men age 50 and over will suffer a bone fracture because of osteoporosis.
Why is osteoporosis so concerning?
Broken bones are not only painful for older people, but also potentially debilitating. That's largely because osteoporosis is most likely to occur in places like the wrist, hip and spine, all of which play a vital role in fluid body movement
Furthermore, older people who break their bones because of osteoporosis may have to undergo surgery, which can present its own set of risks (infections, complications, etc.).
If you suffer from any sort of incapacitating medical condition related to osteoporosis and would like to learn more about your options concerning disability benefits, please consider speaking with an experienced legal professional as soon as possible.