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Carers UK Forum • Osteoperosis/spinal fracture
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Osteoperosis/spinal fracture

Posted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 7:33 pm
by Henrietta
Dad aged 89 has spinal fracture (looks crushed on x ray) in lumbar region but is aged 89 and near end stage renal failure, He is excessively stooped with humped back which I gather is typical of osteoperosis and fractured spines. So question is, can they /would they do anything besides offer pain killers and could it get so bad he looses his very limited mobility and ability to transfer from bed to chair etc?

Re: Osteoperosis/spinal fracture

Posted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 8:32 pm
by bowlingbun
Hi Henrietta,
Mum had osteoporosis and hyperostosis, very similar to spondylosis, which is what men tend to get. Sadly, as mum became bent double, her spine pressed on the nerves to her legs, bowels, and legs. Towards the end of her life (she died recently at the age of 87) she needed a catheter as she lost bladder control, and needed to be hoisted in and out of bed. It got to the stage that she was falling over so much that it was no longer safe for her to try, as her legs would give way without warning when the nerves to her legs were pinched. I realise this is not what you wanted to know. Is he still living in his own home, or now in hospital? This would be a good time to investigate local nursing homes, as I'm afraid you may end up in a crisis situation as we did. Mum was admitted to hospital and after five months was transferred to the nursing home where she spent her final year. (It will need to be a home that offers nursing care). Feel free to PM me if you like.

Re: Osteoperosis/spinal fracture

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 7:57 pm
by Jacob_15032
My wife is 48. And has been having health issues for some years. It was diagnosed as depression. And then she started having ankle problems. And recently started having nerve pains in her hands and feet. And is having sleeplessness cause of lack of pain control. Well. We just found out she has had osteoporosis for years. Cause an early menopause was misdiagnosed. I am. Really. Bloody pissed off this was missed! My wife has been dedicated to her family. And has assisted in looking after her parents through their health problems. Done the right thing. And this is the thanks she gets! Even. With myself. Tries to pull her shoulders back and tries to look after her elderly father and home. And do four hours volunteering work. Despite energy problems and increasing joint pain. I really am pissed off at the profession that is supposed to be doctors. And missed my wife's discomfort!

Re: Osteoperosis/spinal fracture

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 9:27 pm
by bowlingbun
My mum had very very serious osteoporosis. She ignored doctors advice and paid a terrible price. I would suggest that from now on, your wife did everything possible to help her situation. Give up looking after her dad, get someone else to do heavy housework, and do some guided exercise. Swimming is especially good, as it strengthens the muscles around the spine. Lying down every afternoon is important. Getting a really supportive reclining chair so that she never ever sits with her head hanging forward (Mum had Pride reclining chair which was good). Sadly, towards the end, mum lost the use of her legs and bladder control because she was so bent the bones were pressing on the nerves. Don't let this happen to your wife. Supplements are also available, and in certain circumstances, surgery is recommended. Join the National Osteoporosis Society.

Re: Osteoperosis/spinal fracture

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 10:00 pm
by Jacob_15032
Thank you. We have a young gentleman who comes to help me with the garden. And I am encouraging my wife to try some handcraft to keep her fingers and hands nibble. She has been having difficulty with dexterity. And we are looking into natural supplements for pain relief and calcium regeneration. I must say. I feel very let down by the general medical profession on missing my wife's medical issues. I know there are good doctors out there. But I am very uncomfortable with this.

Re: Osteoperosis/spinal fracture

Posted: Sat Mar 28, 2015 7:17 am
by susieq
The main drug used to treat osteoporosis is Fosamax and it is very effective at increasing bone density.

After Mum had taken it for a number of years (the dosage was 1 tablet a week !) her bone density had improved to the extent she was able to stop taking it. Mum's osteoporosis was the result of having a full hysterectomy when she was 50 - unfortunately it was not usual to prescribe HRT at that time after the operation which probably would have stopped her developing the condition.

Re: Osteoperosis/spinal fracture

Posted: Sat Mar 28, 2015 9:40 am
by jenny lucas
In general, I believe that resistence training - ie, using weights, either in fixed weight machines, or free weights, or just your own body weight (eg, press ups) - are good for building bone density and keeping osteoporosis at bay.

That may not be suitable once it's diagnosed, but certainly I've read that it's good for prevention beforehand. Something we should all do perhaps (and cardiovascular exercise too of course, to keep our hearts healthy)(AND possibly delay/prevent vascular dementia as well!!!!)