There are a number of health related problems that often push people to travel abroad. The reasons for medical tourism can be divided into two broad classes namely therapeutic and cosmetic. Therapeutic reasons are those related to health; while some may be minor, others are often life threatening. Cosmetic on the other hand has little or nothing to do with wellness but to improve the general looks of the patient. One of the therapeutic reasons why people opt for medical tourism is osteoporosis.
What is osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a condition of bone wasting. What makes it even more dangerous is that it is a slow process that happens over a stretch of years making it difficult for the doctor or the patient to detect. We all know that the bone is the strongest structure in the body and forms the skeletal system which is the framework of the body. Advanced osteoporosis can lead to paralysis (inability of the patient to walk) or brittle bones that breaks easily.
Negative effects of osteoporosis
Osteoporosis leads to a number of negative effects that may cause the patient to be less active than they used to be or totally grounded. Some of the effects are fracture of the hips which may lead to the person becoming disabled permanently, the person becomes a liability to others and may lead to death in the process. Progressive osteoporosis can lead to a collapse of the vertebrae and bring about a posture called dowager’s hump. It soon gets to the point where involuntary actions like a sneeze would cause a bone to break.
Statistics of people suffering from osteoporosis
According to (NIH) National Institute of Health, thirty four million Americans particularly women whose ages have advanced are threatened by the osteoporosis. The medical condition has also been implicated to be the cause of 1.5 million fractures a year with the treatment cost sower as high as seventeen billion dollars. NIH estimated that when considering those above age fifty, one out of every two women and one in four men will be hit by vertebral fracture and the statistics is expected to grow as population rises.
Causes of osteoporosis
There are varied causes of osteoporosis but genetics (hereditary) and lifestyle seems to be the two main categories into which the other factors will fit into. People who smoke will likely come down with osteoporosis more than non-smokers. Another lifestyle habits that increases the chances of osteoporosis is diet. The others are hormonal changes like can be seen in women going through post-menstrual period. The chances also increase with age. Unlike before when people have to wait till their bones begins to break, there is a better way of diagnosing the disease now and early intervention can be very helpful in combating the more serious fractures.
What medical tourism entails
Medical tourism is a growing field especially medical tourism to India. People from all over the world converge in India annually to relax and get healed. Majority of the operations carried out in India are cosmetic, open heart surgery, knee transplant and dental maneuver. Though India is not yet among the developed countries, it has become a choice destination for many US and UK citizens to get cure because of their more friendly health policies and low cost of health care.
- There are two leading causes of osteoporosis.
- Osteoporosis is a condition of bone damage.
- Those above 50 years are most susceptible to osteoporosis.
- There are various damages that can be caused by osteoporosis.
- Improvement in healthcare is a means of tackling osteoporosis.
- There is no known cure yet for the condition.
- NIH statistics shows the pattern of occurrence of osteoporosis.
- Osteoporosis causes bones to become brittle.
- The cost of treating osteoporosis annually runs into billions of dollars.
- The major procedures carried out in India are heart surgeries and cosmetics.
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