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Degenerative bone disease is a term that can be applied to several conditions featured by degeneration of the bones.

Types of Degenerative Bone DiseaseOsteoporosis

Osteoporosis is a disease in which bones become weak and brittle due to loss of bone density. Osteoporosis often results in bone fractures. Hips, spine and wrists are particularly susceptible to fractures. Our bones are living tissues that are constantly changing. New bone is created and the old one is broken down. This process of remodeling helps our bones to heal but at the same time lifestyle and diet may affect it. After the age of 30, bone remodeling starts to slow down and we lose more bone mass than we gain. Women are particularly at risk of osteoporosis due to hormonal changes. In women, bone loss rapidly increases after menopause because of decrease in levels of estrogen, a hormone that normally protects against bone loss.

Paget’s Disease

Paget’s disease, also known as osteitis deformans is a chronic condition that causes abnormal bone growth. In Paget’s disease, bone remodeling process is disturbed, which results in bone that is brittle, enlarged and susceptible to fracture. Paget’s disease typically affects the spine, pelvis, skull, thigh bone, collar bone and upper arm bone. This disease mainly affects adults and it is estimated that between 2 to 3% of Americans suffer from Paget’s disease. Exact cause of Paget’s disease is unknown. However, family history as well as viral infection represent the risk factor. Paget’s disease is usually asymptomatic and often incidentally discovered during X-ray tests performed for the other reasons. Over time, Paget’s disease starts to manifest in bone pain and bone deformity. Depending on the affected bone different complications may result from the disease. For example, deformity of the skull can cause headaches and hearing loss.

Degenerative ArthritisDegenerative arthritis, also known as osteoarthritis or degenerative joint disease occurs due to an inflammation, breakdown and loss of the cartilage of joints. Degenerative arthritis commonly affects the hands, feet, spine, hips and knees. The disease is associated with symptoms such as joint pain, tenderness, stiffness, swelling and limited movement of joints. Scientists have not identified what causes degenerative arthritis but certain factors are known to increase the risk for the disease. The risk factors include: family history, fractures, age over 45 years and being a female. Also, there are several medical conditions that may contribute to development of osteoarthritis. They are: rheumatoid arthritis, Paget’s disease, gout, parathyroid disease, chronic kidney disease and senile osteoporosis.

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