Your skeleton does more than just hold up your body and grow brittle with age. Bone is a dynamic living organ that changes throughout your life. Just like all the organs in your body it reacts to stresses and, even when you are no longer growing, it can repair itself. Unlike your heart and lungs (but similar to your hair), though, bones grow thinner with age. In some people bone loss is severe, and they develop a condition called osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis, or low bone mass, affects 44 million people aged 50 and older in the United States, according to the International Osteoporosis Foundation. With this disease, bones become so thin and fragile that a minor bump or sneeze can cause a fracture. Each year, osteoporosis causes more than eight million fractures worldwide.
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