Men and Osteoporosis
Being Male Isn't an Osteoporosis Defense
Most people consider Millions of men have osteopenia, which is a decrease in bone mass but not to the extent that it's osteoporosis. This does, however, mean they're at risk of developing osteoporosis as they age.
- Hip fractures are more serious in men than in women—men are more likely to die within a year if they have one.
- Men tend to develop spinal fractures at a later age than women; the older you are when you get a fracture, the more difficult it is to recover.
- Using certain medications, especially steroids
- Having an inactive lifestyle
- Smoking and consuming large amounts of alcohol
- Having low testosterone levels (just as estrogen protects women's bones, testosterone protects men's bones)
- Other medical conditions, such as prostate cancer or rheumatoid arthritis
- A family history of osteoporosis and/or personal history of fractures
Osteoporosis affects millions of people—men and women. Don't make the mistake of thinking that your gender protects you from developing osteoporosis—it doesn't. If you believe you're at risk for developing osteoporosis, it's important to talk to your doctor. He or she will test your bone mineral density (BMD) to determine if a course of treatment is necessary.
You can also take our osteoporosis risk quiz. The earlier you understand your risk, the greater the chance you'll prevent fractures later on.