DR TONY BRAIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR TONY BRAIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Osteoporosis. Coloured scanning electron micro- graaph (SEM) of the brittle and spongy fractured thigh bone (femur) from a patient with osteoporosis. Lighter areas (cream coloured) of this bone have a grainy, spongy appearance, with dark areas (brown) being where the bone mineral has been reabsorbed by the body. Osteoporosis (brittle bone disease) is the loss of the protein matrix from bone causing it to easily fracture. The condition is seen most commonly in the thigh and back bones of post-menopausal women, where it is associated with reduced oestrogen hormone production. Magnification: x300 at 6x6cm size. Magnification: x255 at 6x6cm size.
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