Caring for your bones
Some breast cancer treatments can increase the risk of developing osteoporosis which makes bones more fragile and easier to fracture (break) now or in the future. This applies to women of all ages. Oestrogen helps to keep our bones strong.
Many treatments for breast cancer suppress (switch off) the ovaries, stop oestrogen production or block the effect of oestrogen in the body. Some treatments affect the bone cells directly.
Osteoporosis (thinning of the bones) or osteopaenia (milder bone loss) is diagnosed using a DXA scan. You may need medication to support your bones during your treatment for breast cancer but often there is a lot you can do by improving your lifestyle with a good diet, exercising, not smoking and moderating alcohol intake.