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Osteoporotic fractures can occur in any bone, but the most common sites are the vertebral column (spine), the hip (e.g., after a fall) and the wrist (e.g., while extending an arm to break a fall).

Vertebral fractures can go unnoticed until they cause a loss in height or a stooped posture. These changes occur because bones in the spine (vertebrae) are gradually crushed and shrink. This type of fracture is not always painful.

Only one third of all vertebral fractures are brought to the attention of a physician.

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