Mr. Eggert Caloss was complaining about severe pain in his upper back. He walked along the office hallway very slowly, hunched over his cane. Except for mild hypertension, he is in good health. In fact, one would never guess he is 90 years old. His mind is sharp, and he still drives a car. He didn’t remember falling or injuring his back. I suspected, because of the nature of his symptom, his age, his slender stature, and the hunched-over appearance of his spine, that unfortunately, he had a spontaneous compression fracture of his upper spine as a result of underlying osteoporosis (thin bones). The x-ray of his spine agreed with my clinical diagnosis of compression fracture.
The rest of the visit he and I spent discussing the pros and cons of treating osteoporosis, as well as the medications used in the treatment. Since he is still active and of sound mind, we elected to try the new once a week Fosamax. *This true patient encounter is not an endorsement for the drug Fosamax by Merck. If you want to learn more about osteoporosis click on: