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Depression weakens bones

People who suffer from major depression are at risk for low bone mineral density (BMD).

Depression weakens bones

People who suffer from major depression are at risk for low bone mineral density (BMD).

The role of depression as a risk factor for low bone mineral density and osteoporosis is not fully acknowledged, because of inconsistency of findings in previous studies. Osteoporosis is a disease resulting in thinning and weakening of bones making them more likely to break.

To investigate if depression contributes to Osteoporosis and results in low BMD, researchers from Israel pooled data from 23 studies involving 2327 depressed and 21,141 non-depressed adults.  The researchers assessed the association between depression and BMD as well as between depression and bone turnover markers.

It was noted that depressed individuals had less dense bones than non-depressed individuals. Depressed individuals also had increased levels of bone resorption markers. Also, premenopausal women showed a higher risk than men. This could be attributed to the fact that loss of bone material starts in the late thirties and becomes marked in women after menopause.

The above findings indicate depression as a significant risk factor for low BMD. The researches recommended that people with major depression should have their BMD checked periodically.

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