Choosing a Health Care Professional
If you or someone you know are at risk for osteoporosis or already have it, it’s important that you have a healthcare provider who knows about the disease. While there is no one type of medical specialty dedicated to osteoporosis, many healthcare providers are qualified to diagnose and treat it. Some doctors who may have experience in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis include:
- Family physicians or general practitioners
Some other health professionals who may be able to help people with low bone density or osteoporosis include:
- Nurses and nurse practitioners
- Physical therapists and occupational therapists
- Physician assistants
- Registered dietitians
If you already have a doctor, ask him or her about osteoporosis. Your own healthcare provider, who already knows your overall health, may be able to treat you. If you need to see a specialist, your healthcare provider may be able to suggest one.
If you don’t have a healthcare provider or your healthcare provider can’t help you, call your nearest university hospital or community hospital and ask for physician referral services or the department that cares for osteoporosis patients. This department varies from hospital to hospital. For example, in some facilities, the department of endocrinology or metabolic bone disease treats osteoporosis patients, and in others it may be the department of rheumatology, orthopedics or gynecology.
Some hospitals also have a separate osteoporosis program or women’s health clinic that treats osteoporosis patients. Not all hospitals, however, have departments or programs that focus on osteoporosis.
When you contact a healthcare provider, ask if he or she treats patients with osteoporosis. Healthcare providers with a background or specialty in “metabolic bone diseases” should also be qualified to treat patients with osteoporosis.Search BHOF’s Professional Partner Network to Find a Doctor
If you are unable to locate a healthcare provider in your area, the following organizations may be able to help:
American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE)
Choose: “Click Here to Find an Endocrinologist” and look for providers who list osteoporosis as an interest area.
Phone: +1 (904) 353-7878
American College of Rheumatology (ACR)
Choose: “Find a Member” to find a rheumatologist near you
Please note: ACR is not able to provide physician names over the phone; areas of interest are not included in online directory
Choose: “Find an Endocrinologist” and look for providers who list “osteoporosis & bone health” as an area of concentration.
Phone: +1 (800) 467-6663
When you have a lifelong condition like osteoporosis, it is normal that your interest and ability to keep track of next steps varies over time. Share with your friends and family, as well as additional caregivers that assist you, that you have osteoporosis. They can offer ideas and encouragement to stick with your healthy eating and safe exercise goals and help you follow-up with your healthcare provider to stay on your medications and monitor your progress over time. To view more information through our Path to Good Bone Health click here.
Resources–Show More +
How can my family and care partners provide support?
Falls Prevention From The National Council on Aging
Rheumatoid Arthritis Support Network
Falls Fact Sheet
Compare Medical Alert Systems
National Alliance on Caregiving
Family Caregiver Alliance – Caregiver Resources
Are You a Family Caregiver? from the HealthWell Foundation