HIV Treatment
Alexander McMeeking, MD
155 West 19th Street, 4th Floor
New York, NY 10011
Phone212.929.2629 Fax212.929.4971
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Alexander McMeeking MD FACP

The most comprehensive HIV care and treatment for better living.

The Dangers of HIV and Osteoporosis

As HIV cripples the body’s ability to fight off infection, patients are at risk for a multitude of diseases. One such disease includes osteoporosis. This condition significantly affects both men and women over the age of 50. Of these adults, 4 percent of men and 16 percent of women have osteoporosis of the femur neck or lumbar spine.

Unfortunately, scientists have not been able to find much as to why HIV patients are susceptible to this troubling conditions. However, several factors are believed to be responsible.

Factors Connecting HIV and Osteoporosis

Bone loss has risen in patients with HIV. Several studies have shown that this comorbidity is frequent. Scientists believe the following factors are responsible:

  • HIV medications
  • Long-term use of other medications
  • Old age
  • The HIV infection

Explaining Osteoporosis

Our bones provide a frame or shape for our body, and working together with the muscles, this allow for mobility. They also have other functions as well, including protecting vital organs and producing necessary blood. Without our bones, the body would just be a gelatinous ball of skin, muscles, and organs.

Adults have 206 bones in the human body, which are threatened by bone disease. Osteoporosis is a bone disease that causes bones to become weak and easy to break. This occurs because your body does not produce enough bone tissue, loses too much bone tissue, or both. The bones that are the most vulnerable to this disease include the hip, spine, and wrist.

Symptoms and Testing

The most obvious symptom of osteoporosis is a broken bone. While a broken bone can happen for a variety of reasons, you have to look at the circumstances. Were you just lifting a moderately heavy object? Did something hit against it with enough force to cause a breakage? Where you in an accident? Ask yourself these questions and consult a doctor.

If you have HIV, it is best to assume that your condition is the cause. You also have to remember the primary risk factors for bone loss. That includes your family history, age, a poor diet, your exercise habits, smoking, and drinking. Talk to a HIV specialist near you and ask about a bone density test. These tests can confirm your bone’s strength and if you have osteoporosis.

Our own Dr. McMeeking performs these tests on his patients. He knows that the connection between HIV and Osteoporosis is serious. So, if you live in the New York area, contact his office to schedule an appointment.