Monthly Archives: May 2011

Andropause (Male Menopause)

Andropause is male menopause or manopause. As a male ages his testosterone levels slowly decline. There is no abrupt change or hot flashes for them but as their testosterone levels decline they are more likely to develop osteoporosis, especially after 65 years of age. Males are more likely to die from a complication of hip fracture. The mortality rate (risk of death) is 33% in the 1st year after a hip fracture. So if you have a loved one who is 65 or older it is time to take him for a bone density test. Osteoporosis is not just a woman’s disease.

Dr. Nancy Scheinost
Rheumatology of Brazos Valley

What are the risk factors for Osteoporosis?

The most common risk factors for Osteoporosis are:

  • Being female
  • Post menopausal, (either naturally or surgically because of a hysterectomy)
  • Having small bones
  • Have a mother who had a fracture due to Osteoporosis
  • You weight less than 125 lbs.  Our fat cells produce estrogen naturally, so if you are heavier it does protect your bones.  However, being too heavy is very hard on your joints.

I’ll list more factors in a later blog …….

Dr. Nancy Scheinost
Rheumatology of Brazos Valley

FRAX = Fracture Risk Assessment Tool

Do you know your FRAX score? If you have low bone density on your DEXA test, the FRAX score can add valuable information for your need to be treated for osteoporosis.  The FRAX score is generated by answering a few simple questions.  The information it gives you is an estimate of your risk of breaking a bone in the next 10 years.

If your FRAX score is over 20, it not only means that you have osteoporosis, and have a high risk of breaking a bone, but that your osteoporosis should be treated more aggressively.  PLEASE find out your FRAX score, as it can help you prevent a fracture.

Here’s a link to the online version of the FRAX test.  (Click on the Calculation Tool on the top toolbar).  If your FRAX score is over 20, come in and discuss what options you have to keep your bones healthy.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact my office @ 979-774-7896

Dr. Nancy Scheinost
Rheumatology of Brazos Valley

Vitamin D

Do you know your Vitamin D level?

Vitamin D is needed to build and maintain strong, healthy bones.  The amount of Vitamin D in a typical daily multivitamin is usually only 400 IU on average, but your body may require as much as 4000 IU daily or more.  In a recent study, more than 50% of women receiving medication to treat osteoporosis had low Vitamin D levels.

Be sure that your doctor follows your Vitamin D levels, as it is very important for other functions in our bodies.  (More information on that subject in a future post).  Also be sure that you take your Vitamin D with a meal that contains some fat, as it will help with absorption.

Dr. Nancy Scheinost
Rheumatology of Brazos Valley