Osteoporosis in Cancers

Our bones are a living organism that are broken down and replaced every year using different mechanisms

Osteopenia: reduced bone strength, which may lead to osteoporosis.


Osteoporosis: disease that causes deterioration of bone tissue, leading to weak bones and increased risk of fractures especially in the hip, spine and wrist. referred often as the “the silent thief” since the bone loss occurs, but without any symptoms. Bone mineral densities (BMD) scans help determine bone mass/strength.

Cancer-related treatments that may cause osteoporosis

  • Endocrine Therapy (ex Aromatase Inhibitor in Breast Cancer patients)
  • Androgen Deprivation Therapy (ex. used in prostate cancer)
  • Bone marrow transplant
  • Long-term steroid usage (ex glucocorticoid medication such as prednisone)
  • Bone marrow toxicity- a common side effect of chemotherapy causing bone loss

Rehabilitation interventions for prevention and management of Osteoporosis:

  • Weight-bearing and resistance training program to preserve or increase bone strength
  • Balance training and fall prevention
  • Postural training
  • Body mechanics, positioning and activity counselling tailored for the osteoporotic patient
  • Prevention techniques and biomechanics education for activities of daily living
  • Yoga and Pilates exercise precautions and contraindications for patients with osteoporosis
  • Fracture risk reduction