ZEPHYR / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ZEPHYR / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Osteoporotic spine. Lateral X-ray of the vertebral column at the thoracolumbar hinge in a 64-year-old woman with vertebral fractures relating to osteoporosis. This shows the state of the vertebrae in a standing position where the bones are under load. Over time as osteoporotic bone becomes weaker and more porous, it becomes more susceptible to injury and fractures, especially in situations where significant weight or stress is placed on the bone. The condition can lead to collapse of the vertebrae. Osteoporosis (brittle bone disease) is most common in women after the menopause because they no longer produce the hormone oestrogen that helps in keeping bones healthy.
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