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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    What is the difference between osteoporosis and osteopenia?

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    Dr Ryan Hislop


    Ryan Hislop is the Clinical Director at the Mudgee Chiropractic Health and Wellness Centre. As an experienced and evidence-based diagnostician, Ryan works largely by medical … View Profile

    The diagnostic difference between osteopenia and osteoporosis is the measure of bone mineral density.

    Osteopenia is defined as a bone mineral density T score between -1.0 and -2.5
    Osteoporosis is defined as a bone mineral density T score below -2.5

    Osteopenia is a condition where bone mineral density is lower than normal. It is considered by many doctors to be a precursor to osteoporosis.This being said, not every person diagnosed with osteopenia will develop osteoporosis.

    In osteoporosis, the bone mineral density is reduced, bone microarchitecture deteriorates, and the amount and variety of proteins in bone are altered. This is often a precurser to fractures in the bone due to the weaknes associated with loss of microarchitecture.

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