A great achievement of modern medicine is the increased lifespan of the human population. Unfortunately, the comorbidities of aging have created a large economic and health burden on society. Osteoporosis is the most prevalent age-related disease. It is characterized by uncoupled bone resorption that leads to low bone mass, compromised microarchitecture and structural deterioration that increases the likelihood of fracture with minimal trauma, known as fragility fractures. These fractures lead to disproportionally high mortality rate and a drastic decline in quality of life for those affected. While estrogen loss is one known trigger of osteoporosis, a number of recent studies have shown that osteoporosis is a multifactorial condition in both humans and rodent models. The presence or absence of certain factors are likely to determine which subset of the population develop osteoporosis. In this chapter, we review the factors that contribute to osteoporosis with an emphasis on its multifactorial nature and the therapeutic consequences.
Part of the book: Osteoporosis