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Osteoporosis (literally meaning "porous bones") is a disease in which your bones become thin, fragile, and more likely to break. If not prevented, or if left untreated, osteoporosis can progress painlessly until a bone breaks - usually the hip, wrist or spine - which can lead to significant pain, disability, and reduced quality of life.
The Osteoporosis Program at The University of Vermont Medical Center, located in the Rheumatology outpatient clinic on the Main Campus, provides state-of-the-art evaluation and treatment of osteoporosis and related metabolic bone disease.
We provide specialized medical care and evaluation through measurement of bone mass and a metabolic bone clinic, which treats patients with both acquired and hereditary metabolic bone and mineral disorders.
Osteoporosis & Metabolic Bone Clinic at UVM Medical Center
The Program has on-site bone mineral density (BMD) testing to predict one's likelihood of breaking bones in the future. This instrument called a DXA (Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry) uses very low dose x-ray beams to determine the strength of your bone. The test is simple, quick, and painless. We also provide bone density testing to the community at health fairs and industrial sites, utilizing ultrasound technology.
We educate and treat patients in all stages of osteoporosis to prevent further bone loss and reduce the chance of breaking a bone. We also evaluate and treat other forms of bone disease such as osteomalacia, hyperparathyroidism, Paget's disease, osteogenesis imperfecta, and unexplained bone fractures. The Osteoporosis Program is investigating new and current treatments through clinical research studies.
Experienced, Trusted Expertise
The Osteoporosis Program, founded in 1990, was the first such program in northern New England. Since that time, the Program has evaluated hundreds of individuals afflicted with bone disease and has performed bone density studies on over 24,000 individuals.
All provider members certified in bone density interpretation by the International Society for Clinical Densitometry (ISCD) in order to provide high-quality measurement of bone density. After an initial orientation period, all of our technologists have also become certified densitometric technologists.
Conditions We Treat
The UVM Medical Center also treats osteoporosis and metabolic bone diseases such as:
- Hyperparathyroidism - an enlargement of the parathyroid glands that can cause overproduction of a hormone resulting in high levels of calcium in the blood.
- Vitamin D deficiency
- Pagets Disease of Bone - abnormal bone growth of one or more bones.
- Osteogenesis Imperfecta - genetic disorders that affect the bones.
- X-linked Hypophosphatemia - low levels of phosphate in the blood.
- Hypophosphatasia - low level of alkaline phosphatase in the body.
Who Should be Tested for Osteoporosis?
These age groups may benefit from testing:
- Women age 65+
- Men age 70+
- Postmenopausal women with risk factors (including family history; thin build; infrequent exercise; too little calcium and vitamin D; history of smoking; and treatment with medications which affect the bones, such as glucocorticoids.)
- Anyone age 40+ with a broken bone not caused by major trauma.
Bone Density Testing Information
The UVM Medical Center performs over 3,500 scans annually at the Main Campus, East Pavilion, Level 5, Burlington, VT.
For Medical Professionals
For bone density testing, your doctor will need to fax a "Request for Bone Density Study" form to the Osteoporosis Program at fax number 802-847-7990.