Depending on your treatment, your NYU Langone doctor may want to meet with you for follow-up examinations to see how you’re responding to therapy. A bone density test is the primary tool used to assess your bone health over time.
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If your treatment plan consists of medication, regular follow-up visits with your doctor are important in order to address any side effects or symptoms. Some people don’t adjust well to the first medication a doctor prescribes. You may need to try more than one medication to find one that works for you.
If left untreated, osteoporosis can lead to multiple, uncomfortable, and potentially debilitating compression fractures in the spine. Although rare, this complication could eventually necessitate spinal surgery.
Any bone fracture caused by osteoporosis—particularly a fracture in the hip bone—can significantly increase your risk of developing other health problems. A fracture sometimes leaves a person bedridden, which makes him or her more prone to blood clots, hospital-acquired illness, and other consequences of immobility.
Doctors at NYU Langone may recommend the following support services for people with low bone mass or osteoporosis and those who have related bone fractures.
Doctors strongly discourage people with osteoporosis from smoking because the chemicals in tobacco increase your risk of a fracture. NYU Langone’s Tobacco Cessation Programs can help you quit smoking for good.
Vitamin D and calcium support bone strength. The first steps in managing low bone mass or osteoporosis are to make sure you’re getting enough vitamin D and to eat calcium-rich foods or take calcium supplements.
Registered dietitians and nutritionists are available to help you create a diet plan that helps to strengthen your bones and decrease bone loss.
If you need to strengthen your muscles and bones and build up your endurance, either after a fall or to prevent bone deterioration, your endocrinologist may refer you for physical therapy. At NYU Langone’s Rusk Rehabilitation, physical therapists trained in the treatment of muscle and bone disorders offer a combination of therapies aimed at enhancing and restoring bone strength and overall mobility, balance, and posture.
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