The following topics concerning the bones may be found in the AMS Information Sheets.
Calcium Supplements – a patient guide
The use of calcium supplements has long been considered an integral part of managing osteoporosis, with detailed reviews of medical research indicating a reduction in fracture risk when calcium and vitamin D are prescribed. In addition to the bone health benefits, there is also evidence that calcium supplements may improve cholesterol levels, blood pressure, clotting risk and other cardiovascular risk factors.
Menopause and osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is a condition characterised by weakened bones that fracture easily. After menopause many women are at risk of developing osteoporosis.
Peak bone mass is usually reached in your 20s to 30s when the skeleton has stopped growing and bones are at their strongest.
The female sex hormone oestrogen plays an important role in maintaining bone strength. After menopause oestrogen levels drop and this may result in increased bone loss. The average woman loses up to 10 per cent of her bone mass in the first five years after menopause. Research suggests that about half of all women over the age of 60 years will have at least one fracture due to osteoporosis.
Prevention of falls and fractures as you age past the menopause
Falls are the main cause of fractures or broken bones at any age.
Risk of falling is increased with age, number of medical conditions (3 or more), number of medications (4 or more), small or large body size, vision or hearing decline, vestibular problems (middle ear balance organ problems), poor balance, stroke, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and dementia. With every additional medical condition diagnosed before the age of 60, the risk of falling increases by 8%. After the age of 60, this increases to 35% with every additional medical condition such as high blood pressure, asthma or arthritis (1).
The Role of SERMS after Menopause
SERMs is the shorthand term for a class of drug called selective oestrogen receptor modulators. These compounds act like oestrogen in some parts of the body and in other parts of the body they have an anti-oestrogenic effect. They are a versatile group of drugs that can be used to treat a number of conditions associated with aging such as osteoporosis (bone thinning disease) and hormone responsive cancers, and also in infertility.
Note: Medical and scientific information provided and endorsed by the Australasian Menopause Society might not be relevant to a particular person's circumstances and should always be discussed with that person's own healthcare provider.
These Information Sheets may contain copyright or otherwise protected material. Reproduction of this Information Sheet by Australasian Menopause Society Members and other health professionals for clinical practice is permissible. Any other use of this information (hardcopy and electronic versions) must be agreed to and approved by the Australasian Menopause Society.
Content updated March 2014