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Osteoporosis is aptly called the "silent disease" because calcium loss happens without warning symptoms

Osteoporosis is aptly called the "silent disease" because calcium loss happens without warning symptoms. Many people learn they have osteoporosis when they break a bone; but there is a better way.

Several bone mineral density (BMD) tests has been developed to measure calcium in bones and to predict potential fractures.

An accurate ultrasound style test is often done in a clinic or pharmacy, as the ultrasound machine is highly portable. The patient's ankle is positioned in the machine (a Densitometer) and within minutes they learn their bone density score. If the score is low, further tests can be done in a clinic or hospital.

Those concerned about their bone density can now be tested by visiting better health food stores, where they will be offered a Densitometer ultrasound BMD with the purchase of a bone building calcium supplement.

Source: Miriam E. Nelson, Ph.D. School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University.

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