Today I’m feeling some low grade depression. Over the last several months I’ve been privately coping with a diagnosis of osteoporosis. Osteoporosis means I’ve got a major case of bone loss. Most women in their menopause years have osteoporosis and don’t even know it.
According to reports about 10 million Americans’ have Osteoporosis. Eighty percent are women. Think about that for a minute. Eighty percent!
My truth is that I’m disheartened by the diagnosis and I’m angry at Western Medicine practitioners. Here’s why: I have been thin my whole life. Thin people are at high risk and almost absolute risk after 50, it seems. I remember as a little girl multiple doctors said I was at risk of getting osteoporosis with age simply because I was thin. But they also knew I had food allergies. I was lactose intolerant. That means no dairy for me. Yet, all they said was that I might be at risk of getting it?
And, they didn’t take time to explain osteoporosis. Loosely speaking, most people know that the word means bone loss. But most don’t realize that it’s a major disease that can be debilitating and deadly.
Osteoporosis is often referred to as a silent killer.
Since then, I’ve had other doctors mention it but I was in my early twenties. I was young and naive. I thought they meant when I was 80 or 90. I had NO idea younger people could lose bone. And just as with my mother neither of these doctors explained what osteoporosis meant.
In all of these years, since, not one doctor has ever offered a bone density test (DEXA) or even suggested dietary or supplemental options. They don’t offer the scan until they think you already have bone loss. What kind of a plan is that?!
Western medicine is rooted in treatment, not prevention. So prevention us up to me and you.
I’m so saddened. The thought of my bones disintegrating is painful. Every step I take I don’t want to take it for granted. I find myself teetering between optimism and hope—and doom. I grieve for the body I used to have.
I’m not one to sit on the sidelines, though. I’m educating myself. I’m currently taking a Harvard taught class on osteoporosis prevention and bone health. I’m learning some good stuff to help me develop a bone health and restoration plan, and make informed decisions. I’ll be back to talk more about that. In the meantime may I suggest?
- Get a DEXA Scan. A dexa scan measures your bone density and identifies bone loss.
- Make a health plan of action with prevention and early detection at the center of it and take it with you to your doctors. List the things that may run in your family and the things that could come up just because you’re a woman. Request labs and scans and dietary notes based on your plan.
Thanks for being here. Please share your health setbacks, challenges or even western medicine lessons and disappointments in the comments.