A recent article suggests that women, who have either psychosis with substance abuse or mood issues alone, are more likely to develop osteoporosis. The study, led by Deanna L. Kelly, Pharm. D., an associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, examined information gathered from nearly 19,000 women between the ages of 50 and 64. The results showed that the oldest women who were dealing with a substance abuse and psychosis were over six times more likely to develop osteoporosis than the control group. Women with mood issues were more than one and a half times more likely to experience osteoporosis in the future. However, those women who dealt with only substance issues or only psychosis showed no increased risk for developing the illness.
“People with schizophrenia are considered a high-risk group for developing bone loss and osteoporosis, due in part to the illness itself and to multiple associated risk factors such as poor diet, low exercise, early menopause, and antipsychotic-associated hyperprolactinemia (an excess of prolactin),” said Kelly. “There is also evidence that osteoporosis and bone loss is greater in people who are smokers and who are substance abusing, both common in persons with psychotic disorders,” Kelly and her co-authors noted.
At the onset of the study, nearly seven percent of the women were diagnosed with osteoporosis, yet only four percent had received a screening prior to the study. The findings also revealed that the women with substance issues were nearly half as likely to have ever gotten screened for the illness. “Accordingly, it appears that efforts should be made to increase osteoporosis prevention and treatment in those with substance abuse problems and especially in those who also have co-morbid psychosis,” the researchers wrote. “The higher rates of diagnosed osteoporosis among older women with major mood issues indicate that this group, also, may require more extensive screening.”
© Copyright 2011 by By Noah Rubinstein, LMFT, LMHC, therapist in Olympia, Washington. All Rights Reserved. Permission to publish granted to GoodTherapy.org.
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