Are you at risk for developing osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is a disease in which bone tissue is reduced, thus increasing the risk of fracture which usually involves the hip, spine or wrist.

One out of every three westernised postmenopausal women will have a spinal fracture due to osteoporosis. Up to 20% of hip fracture victims die within a year. The fracture rate in both females and males has increased significantly in the past decade.

Osteoporosis causes no pain or discomfort until fractures occur and has been called "the silent epidemic".

Answer the following questions to test your risk.

Have you ever had a fracture after a minor or insignificant injury?

Have you ever suffered from, or do you suffer from hormonal, gut or eating disorders?

Have you experienced a recent or a progressive loss of height?

Do you use steroid (cortisone) regularly?

Are you over 70 years of age?

Are you a woman, who has mothers or sisters who have developed osteoporosis?

Do you drink regularly and heavily (premenopausal women, all men)?

Did your menopause start before age 45, or are there other causes of low sex hormones?

Do you take regular antiseizure medications?

Are you over 50 years of age?

Are you female?

Do you have a small body frame, e.g. body weight less than 55kg?

Do you do very little exercise?

Is your calcium intake low?

Do you smoke, or have you smoked in the past?

Are you white, Asian or of mixed race?

Are you childless?

Have you ever breastfed?

Do you have a fair complexion?