High blood pressure may accelerate osteoporosis, bone aging

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They say you can lower the risk of osteoporosis by eating a healthy diet, getting regular exercise that includes weight lifting, and avoiding smoking and excessive amounts of alcohol. High blood pressure may accelerate osteoporosis and bone aging, according to a studyTrusted Source presented at the 2022 American Heart Association’s Hypertension Scientific Session. The mice with induced high blood pressure received the hormone angiotensin II for six weeks. The researchers analyzed bone health for all four groups at the end of the six weeks. They determined bone health by the strength and density of the bone. The older mice given the hormone to induce high blood pressure did not have such a significant decline in bone health.

“In these mice, being hypertensive at a younger age essentially aged bones as if they were 25 human years older,” Elizabeth Hennen, lead author of the study and Ph.D. candidate in biomedical engineering at Vanderbilt University in Tennessee, told Healthline. “Old mice will experience bone loss whether they are hypertensive or not. This study shows that [high blood pressure] may trigger a pathway like age-related bone loss, effectively aging young bones.”

The scientists also said they saw inflammation-signaling molecules, indicating increased inflammation compared to the young mice without high blood pressure. “It has become clear that [high blood pressure] is at least partly an inflammatory disease. We found that both [high blood pressure] and aging activate certain cells implicated in both [high blood pressure] and osteoporosis,” explained Hennen.

The researchers said they believe that the results indicate a need to screen people with high blood pressure for osteoporosis. They said they hope new approaches to preventing osteoporosis are developed as knowledge of this topic increases. Osteoporosis is a bone disease that develops when bone mineral density and bone mass decrease, which can reduce bone strength and increase the risk of a bone fracture.

Osteoporosis is the leading cause of fractures in postmenopausal women and older men. Many people do not know they have it until they break a bone, receiving a diagnosis after a routine screening. Fractures most often occur in the hip, vertebrae, spine, or wrist but can occur in any bone. Osteoporosis can occur at any age, but your risk increases as you age. It is most common in non-Hispanic white women, Asian women, and non-Hispanic white men.

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