Calcium Disorders and Osteoporosis
What is Hypercalcemia?
Hypercalcemia is a condition in which the calcium level in the blood is above normal.
Too much calcium in the blood leads to kidney stones and can weaken the bones.
It can also interfere with the functioning of the heart and brain.
What are the Symptoms of Hypercalcemia?
Symptoms of high blood calcium level include:
– Feeling thirsty and urinating frequently
– Abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, or constipation
– Bone pain, muscle weakness
– Fatigue, lethargy, or confusion
What are the Causes of Hypercalcemia?
Hypercalcemia may be caused by:
– Overactive parathyroid gland(s)
– Some medications
– Hereditary factors
– Prolonged immobility
What is Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a condition in which the bones become weak and brittle.
The bone is a living tissue that is constantly being broken down and replaced.
Osteoporosis occurs when the creation of new bone does not keep up with the removal of old bone.
The bones will become so brittle that a fall or even mild stresses such as coughing or bending over can cause a fracture.
Osteoporosis-related fractures most commonly occur in the hip, wrist or spine.
What are the Risk Factors for Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis affects men and women of all races.
Older women who are past menopause are at highest risk.
Other risk factors include:
– Having a parent or sibling with osteoporosis or hip fracture
– Overactive thyroid gland
– Overactive parathyroid glands
– Low calcium intake
– Use of long-term medications such as steroids
– Certain medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis
– Excessive alcohol consumption
– Tobacco smoking
What are the Symptoms of Osteoporosis?
There are usually no symptoms in the early stages of bone loss.
Symptoms and signs that may occur once the bones are weakened by osteoporosis include:
– Bone fracture that occurs more easily than expected
– Back pain (due to a fractured or collapsed vertebra)
– Loss of height over time
– Stooped posture