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Bone Health Issues During Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Adi Cohen, MD, MHS posted:
During pregnancy, it's important for a woman to get enough calcium for herself as well as her growing baby. Most studies show that while some bone loss may occur during pregnancy, a woman usually regains it after giving birth. In fact, studies show that having children, even as many as 10, does not increase a woman's chance of getting osteoporosis later in life.

For women who have pregnancies in their teens, the effects on bone health later in life are still not certain. Teens have not yet reached peak bone mass. More studies are needed to learn if teen pregnancies can affect future bone health.

Some women develop a temporary type of osteoporosis during pregnancy. While we do not fully understand what causes this type of osteoporosis, it is extremely rare and usually goes away shortly after a woman gives birth.

Breastfeeding for the recommended 6-12 months has many health benefits for mother and baby. Like pregnancy, breastfeeding may cause some temporary bone loss. However, bone density appears to recover over time and should not cause long-term harm to a woman's bone health.
Megte responded:
I just found out I have osteoperosis and I am just 40. I however am a paraplegic and permanently use a wheelchair. I have been since 1987 (17). I was told that I was at risk is all. Now I have it real bad in my legs and hips. Spine is ok. I just had my first child last year and breastfed him for a year. I just stopped 3/19/10.

Could this be just an anomoly? I feel lost right now and so much to live for?

How much of all this could be related?
bonebabe replied to Megte's response:
I hope Dr Cohen will address this with you.

A diagnosis of osteoporosis is not usually given to women who have not gone through menopause. You have serveral issues going on here.

Your lack of weight bearing exercise (being on your feet) will certainly cause your bones to thin. Also pregnancy and breastfeeding can deplete your bone mass.

While the osteo drugs are not approved for premenopausal women, if you're not going to have any more children or have had a tubal, you might want to talk to your doctor at this time about your options for treatment.

Certainly it is imperative that you put calcium into your body. You need 1200mg each day. If you don't get that in your diet, take a supplement. The body can only absorb about 500-600 mg at a time, so spread it out throughout the day.

You also need to take a Vitamin D supplement. Ask your doctor to have your levels checked if you haven't already. Many people are shown to be deficient. You'll need about 1000 IU a day unless the doctor gives you RX D.

Go online to the National Osteoporosis Foundation website ( ) for more information on bone health.
Megte replied to bonebabe's response:
Thank you for your response. I see my doc Tuesday Aug 3rd. He was stating Vit D and calcium. We shall see. I did see an orthopaedist today and he did say that pregnancy and breastfeeding may have contributed as well as thin bones from paralysis. I feel more hopeful for sure.


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