Proudly supported by
Garvan Institute of Medical Research
The Garvan Institute of Medical Research (Sydney) is one of Australia’s leading medical research institutes. Garvan’s researchers pioneer studies into some of the most widespread diseases affecting the community today, including osteoporosis, cancer, diabetes and neurodegenerative diseases.
Garvan’s research is organised into six Divisions: Bone Biology, Cancer, Diabetes and Metabolism, Genomics and Epigenetics, Immunology and Neuroscience. In addition, Garvan houses the Kinghorn Centre for Clinical Genomics, the southern hemisphere’s largest genome sequencing facility.
Osteoporosis Australia is a national not-for-profit organisation.
We aim to reduce the burden of osteoporosis in to build a life without fractures. Our work focusses on community awareness and education programs, preventing broken bones in people at risk and assisting osteoporosis patients.
We lobby federal government to achieve better care for patients and work with health professionals to improve diagnosis of osteoporosis. Osteoporosis Australia also supports bone research.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is osteoporosis?
What is osteopenia?
What is bone mineral density?
Bone density is amount of bone mineral in bone tissue and relates to the strength of your bones.
What is a Bone Mineral Density Test?
A bone mineral density test is a simple scan that measures the density of your bones, usually at the hip and spine. You simply lie flat on a padded table and the arm of the machine passes over your body. The scan takes approximately 10-15 minutes. You remain clothed during the scan.
What is a T-score?
A T-score is the result that you get from having a bone mineral density scan. Your T-score is your bone density compared with what is normally expected in a healthy young adult of your sex.
Can osteoporosis be treated?
Osteoporosis can be treated and there are a number of effective and well tolerated therapies available and approved in Australia. It is most important that osteoporosis is detected and treated as early as possible to reduce the risk of suffering fractures. Once you have had your first osteoporotic fracture you have a higher risk of another fracture, but that risk may be reduced with effective treatment. So it's really important to find out more about your bone health and what you can do about it.
What is a fracture versus a broken bone?
A fracture and a broken bone are essentially the same thing. A fracture is a complete or partial break in a bone. Any bone can be affected by osteoporosis; common bones that fracture are in the hip, spine, wrist, arm, leg and pelvis. Fractures lead to pain, hospitalisation, additional fractures, loss of independence
What is meant by the term Fall?
A fall results in a person accidentally coming to rest on the ground or floor. Balance exercises can be very effective in preventing falls and subsequent fractures.
What is a Calcium supplement
When it is not possible or convenient to get enough calcium from your diet, a supplement may be required (usually about 500-600mg). Supplements may take the form of oral tablets (swallowed), effervescent tablets, chewable tablets or soluble powder. Take supplements as directed and talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any queries.
What is a Vitamin D supplement
For people with low vitamin D levels, a supplement may be required. Most vitamin D supplements are 'Vitamin D3’ and the dose on the product is shown in International Units (IU). Vitamin D supplements are available as tablets, capsules, drops or liquid. Your doctor will advise you on the appropriate dose (generally around 1000 IU/day) for your needs and your pharmacist can also provide general advice on vitamin D supplements.
What types of exercise are effective for bones?
Resistance or muscle strengthening exercises are the most effective for bones, as well as weight-bearing exercises. Weight bearing exercise is done while on your feet, bearing your own body weight. Some examples may be jogging, skipping, basketball, tennis, dancing. It does not include swimming or cycling.