Osteoporosis (OP) is a silent disease that leads to thinning of bones and consequently an increased risk of fracture. Patients may not experience any symptoms unless a fracture occurs. Fractures are associated with a lot of morbidity and lead to marked reduction in quality of life of the patient. It is diagnosed by doing a bone mineral density (DEXA) scan.
There are several ways to detect which patient may be at risk of osteoporosis including calculation of the 10year risk using the internationally validated FRAX score. Ultrasound when used properly under the guidance of a clinician experienced in its use and familiar with OP can be helping in detecting patients at risk. It also has no radiation exposure for a patient.
There are many treatments for OP including bisphosphonates which slow the rate of bone turnover, denosumab which has a similar effect and strontium which in addition can strengthen the outside or cortex of the bone. More advanced therapies includes Teriparatide which is injected daily for a period of time.