150 093 Lecture 7

150 093 Lecture 7 - Commentary on Lecture 7 September 15,...

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Commentary on Lecture 7 September 15, 2009 Osteoporosis is a name that literally means “ bones with holes” which, of course, weakens them. There are two forms of this partially nutritional, partially environmental disease. The one that affects very young children is called rickets. The one that affects older people is called osteoporosis or sometimes “osteomalacia” (soft bones). Rickets is a disease of bone formation and osteoporosis is a disease of bone re-modelling. Rickets has been known since the 2 nd Century AD. It manifests itself in bowed legs (as if the child had been riding a horse) and a slumped rib cage where the ribs are many inches lower that they should be as could be seen in the photograph I showed you. Descriptions from the 2 nd Century match what could be seen in the photo. Osteoporosis manifests itself unexpectedly through a broken bone (most often a hip bone) resulting from a fall by someone usually over 65 years of age. . Up until that moment the ‘victim’ hadn’t been aware of the danger. The rigidity of normal bone is due to a mineral compound called calcium phosphate. Bones develop starting in utero and continue through childhood by the coming together of calcium ions and phosphate ions in places where bone is being formed and the bones are formed and in place at the time of childbirth although not strong enough to support any significant amount of weight. Up until the late 17 th Century rickets was not considered a significant health risk but after the start of the Industrial Revolution in Northern Europe (and later in North America) it became more common. The shift from a predominantly agrarian life-style with more work being done out of doors to growing cities where industries and factories were being built and people (including children) lived and worked indoors from dawn to dusk
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This note was uploaded on 04/27/2010 for the course BISC 150 at USC.

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150 093 Lecture 7 - Commentary on Lecture 7 September 15,...

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