- Question from Micky: Are men at risk for osteoporosis? All I ever hear about is women. If so, what percentage of men are at risk?
Men are at risk of osteoporosis because there's age-related bone loss, as opposed to estrogen-related bone loss. The hormonal treatments for prostate cancer are also associated with bone loss. Osteoporosis is a concern particularly for men with prostate cancer, who have emphysema, are on steroids, or have other health-related problems. So men are not spared.
I think that bone loss and osteoporosis are preventable and highly treatable conditions if they're recognized. We have good tools in terms of DEXA scans that can identify those at risk of developing fractures, and we have pretty good medications. Beyond medications, lifestyle changes not only impact on reducing the risk of osteoporosis, but if adopted—I'm talking about exercising, not smoking, not drinking or drinking less—will improve overall health and increase longevity. This is something in every person's control, and we really have to take control of our own health and health maintenance. So when you treat and prevent osteoporosis, many times you're doing things that not only affect the osteoporosis, but affect overall health.
- Marisa Weiss, M.D. It's important to work closely with your doctor to coordinate all these efforts and also to learn about new advances as they develop. breastcancer.org features important information like this in our monthly Research News. Stay tuned!
The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Keeping Your Bones Strong featured Charles L. Shapiro, M.D. and Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions about how to measure the strength of your bones, how to find out your risk for osteoporosis, and what you can do to lower that risk.
Editor's Note: This conference took place in August 2002.
The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.
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