Decreased bone strength is called as osteoporosis. Most commonly seen in old age postmenopausal women due to hormonal changes(lower levels of estrogen). Osteoporosis can also occur due to kidney diseases, alcoholism, surgical removal of ovaries and long term steroid intake.


Patients with osteoporosis are prone to get fractures easily even with trivial fall. Most common regions to get fractured are back bone , wrist and hip bone. Apart from fracture patient may also have bone pain.

Xray is the basic investigational modality and DEXA scan is more specific for diagnosing osteoporosis.

Treatment is mainly medications. Calcium supplements with vitamin D is the main stay of treatment. Newer drugs like bisphosphonates and teriparatide injections aid in faster building up of bone strength.

In patients with osteoporotic vertebral body fracture with severe pain , a newer technique called – vertebroplasty (injecting bone cement in to vertebral body ) can be done to reduce pain.

Case Example:

Post menopausal women with osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures may have severe pain restricting their activities. In the event of failed conservative management injecting bone cemnt into the vertebral body(vertebroplasty) will relieve the pain. Here a 65 old female was treated with vertebroplasty for L1 compression fracture.