Oakland Orthopedic

Bruce T Henderson, MD

Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeon located in Pontiac, MI

Osteoporosis is a silent affliction where bones become thinner and weaker over time. Though usually painless, it often leads to “fragility fractures”. Fragility fractures of the spine are especially painful and can occur without any trauma. Other common fragility fractures occur at the hip, shoulder, and wrist. Millions of Americans have osteoporosis or are at risk of developing it. Dedicated to providing comprehensive care, Bruce Henderson, MD, at Oakland Orthopedic in Pontiac, Michigan, orders bone density testing for osteoporosis at St Joseph Mercy Oakland hospital. Only SJMO performs a very thorough test with twice as many measurements as any other facility. At a follow up appointment he provides a detailed and personalized treatment plan to improve bone health. Call the office or book an appointment online today.


What is osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is a bone condition that causes thin and weak bones that are more susceptible to fractures. 

The bones in your body are under constant construction, with new bone cells replacing old bone cells to maintain health and strength. As you get older, new bone cell production slows down and your body may not be able to produce enough new cells to replace the old. 

When bone cell breakdown exceeds bone cell replacement, your bones weaken, and your risk of fractures and osteoporosis increases. 

Osteoporosis affects men and women. However, women are at greater risk of developing the bone condition because menopause occurs around age fifty. This leads to a 15% loss of total bone mass every five years.

How is osteoporosis diagnosed?

Osteoporosis occurs over time but has no symptoms. You may not realize you have the bone condition, or are at risk of developing it, until after you break a bone. Bone density tests diagnose osteoporosis.

You should have a bone density test to screen for osteoporosis if you:

  • Are a woman 65 or older
  • Are a man 70 or older
  • Are 50 or older with a fragility fracture
  • Have risk factors for osteoporosis (smoking, poor diet habits, use of steroids or tobacco, etc.)

Dr. Henderson finds it especially important to accurately assess and measure the spine and the density of your vertebral bones, or vertebral bodies. In most cases, these bones have the lowest mineral density and are at the greatest risk of fractures, specifically vertebral compression fractures.

Painful vertebral compression fractures can  be successfully treated with a minimally invasive procedure called Kyphoplasty, whereby the pain is immediately relieved. Please see the heading Sudden Back Pain. 

How is osteoporosis treated?

It’s important to know that osteoporosis can be successfully treated and even reversed. At a follow-up visit after your bone density test, Dr. Henderson reviews the results with you and discusses your treatment. He personalizes your treatment plan based on your risk of breaking a bone over the next 10 years.

Your treatment plan may include:

  • Lifestyle modifications to limit your risk of falls
  • Exercise routine to improve bone health
  • Diet modification
  • Nutritional supplements, the necessary 'building blocks' for bone
  • Prescription medication to improve bone health and strength

For vertebral compression fractures from osteoporosis, Dr. Henderson performs minimally invasive kyphoplasty. During this procedure, he injects a special balloon and cement into the bone to restore height and solidify the vertebrae which dramatically alleviates the pain.

For expert care for your osteoporosis from a physician committed to helping you prevent fractures, call or book an appointment online today.