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Menopause and Bone Loss

Throughout life, your body keeps a balance between the loss of bone and the creation of new bone. You reach your highest bone mass (size and density) at about age 30. Then, sometime between age 30 and 35, your body begins to lose bone faster than it can be replaced.

Menopause—the time when menstrual periods end, which usually happens in your late forties or early fifties—dramatically speeds up bone loss. After menopause your ovaries stop producing the hormone estrogen, which helps to keep your bones strong. Even during perimenopause (the period of 2 to 8 years before menopause), when your periods start to become irregular, your estrogen levels may start to drop off and you could start to lose bone more rapidly.

Over time, this bone loss can lead to osteopenia (low bone mass) or even osteoporosis, a condition in which bones become weak and are more likely to break (fracture).

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The Hormone Foundation

Dr. Lysette Iglesias M.D.

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