Coping with Osteoporosis in Childhood Cancer
Symptom Management, Palliative Care, or Supportive Care to relieve side-effects is an important part of cancer care and treatment and should always form part of the overall treatment plan.
Osteoporosis is the most common type of bone disease. It develops
when more bone tissue is broken down by the body than can be replaced, resulting in bones becoming weak and fragile and more likely to fracture (break). These fractures may cause pain and disability that can interfere with your child’s daily life.
Osteoporosis is not only caused by cancer or cancer-related treatments; many individuals get osteoporosis as they grow older because as we age our bodies lose the ability to replace the cells needed to repair and rebuild bone tissue, and bones may become thin and more porous as a result.
Bone mass loss does not happen overnight, but it often goes unnoticed until a person experiences pain, loss of function, or a fracture. If your child experiences back pain, painful joints, or stiffness, tell your doctor or nurse as soon as possible. Warning signs of more serious bone problems are often mistaken for arthritis-like symptoms.
Depending on how low your child’s bone mineral density is compared to normal, the doctor may diagnose osteopenia (mild bone loss) or osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis and other bone complication treatments more often than not involve the use of bone-modifying drugs like bisphosphonates which slow the rate of bone thinning and may reduce new bone damage and promote bone healing. Bisphosphonates are also sometimes given to patients who experience bone pain related to the spread of cancer.
Read more about the Effects, Signs and Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis and Treatment and more regarding Osteoporosis on our static page, Osteoporosis in Childhood Cancer
Posted on 1 July, 2016, in Blog and tagged cancer, Child Cancer Awareness, childhood cancer, Children with Cancer, Fighting Cancer, Little Fighters Cancer Trust, Osteoporosis, side effects. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.