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OsteoporosisBone Fractures

Let's Talk About Bone Fractures Due to Osteoporosis

A bone break is often a sudden, painful indicator of osteoporosis. We explain what leads to a break, how fractures are treated, and potential complications to look out for.

    Our Pro PanelBone Fractures Due to Osteoporosis

    We went to some of the nation’s top bone doctors for the most scientific and up-to-date information possible.

    Stephen Liu, M.D.

    Stephen Liu, M.D.Clinical Assistant Professor

    UCLA School of Medicine
    Los Angeles, CA
    Eliana Cardozo, D.O.

    Eliana Cardozo, D.O.Physiatrist and Assistant Professor

    Rehabilitation and Physical Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital
    New York, NY
    Kendall Moseley, M.D.

    Kendall Moseley, M.D.Medical Director

    Johns Hopkins Metabolic Bone & Osteoporosis Center
    Baltimore, MD

    Frequently Asked QuestionsBone Fractures

    Does osteoporosis cause pain?

    Osteoporosis typically has no symptoms until you fracture a bone. And, yup, that can hurt a lot. But if your bones are especially brittle, you may experience little pain and not even know you have a fracture. In the case of a spinal compression fracture, a collapsed vertebra in your spine, your only indication may be a backache that gets worse after you’ve been sitting for a while.

    What are the most common fractures due to osteoporosis?

    Osteoporotic fractures typically occur in your wrist, hip, and spine, although they can happen in other spots like shoulders and ankles. Wrist fractures usually occur when you try to stop yourself from falling, breaking your fall with your hands. Hip and spine fractures can happen from falls, but when osteoporosis is severe, they can occur from simply bending the wrong way.

    Fracture versus break: What’s the difference?

    In a word: Nada! Fracture is the medical term for a broken bone and you may hear doctors and lay people alike use them interchangeably.

    How long does it take for a bone to heal?

    Without complications, you should have your range of motion back and be free of pain within six to eight weeks, but the full healing process can take a year or more. Long after your cast or splint comes off, your bones continue to “remodel,” the process of new bone forming and reshaping.

    Krista Bennett DeMaio

    Krista Bennett DeMaio

    @Kbdemaio

    Krista Bennett DeMaio is a health and beauty writer living in Huntington, NY with her husband and three daughters.