Age 79 • Greece
Early diagnosis, a bone-healthy lifestyle, and medication have helped Jane Pittadaki remain fracture free ever since her diagnosis of severe osteoporosis.
Jane, who lives in Athens, was a high-risk candidate for osteoporosis, having had early menopause due to a hysterectomy at age 40. At age 50, after various tests and a DXA scan, she was diagnosed with osteoporosis. Ever since, she has been taking a lot of medication, as well as vitamin D and calcium. "And so far, although I have had five or six falls, I’ve been lucky enough not to have a fracture", she says.
I’m a very active person. I’m very busy every day with tasks that ensure I don’t stay still and quiet. I run up and down a lot as a volunteer nurse at the Red Cross blood transfusion center. We have beautiful seas and islands in Greece, and every summer I swim daily. During the winter I do exercises like pilates and walking. My specialist has advised me not to sit, but to walk a lot. And I do. I take three to four mile walks at least three times a week. I also take part in 5 km walking events and will do one again in November here in Athens when we have the classical marathon run.
Jane doesn’t feel that osteoporosis has changed her life so far. She lives quite normally. However she does take every precaution to avoid falls. She keeps in mind that she has to be very careful coming down the steps or on escalators - she holds on to the handrail and isn’t shy about asking to hold a friend’s hand if necessary. She is cautious when she is in crowds where she could potentially be pushed and fall.
She’s also feels that being optimistic and thinking positively is enormously important.
I feel hopeful that the medications I take, together with physical exercise, will really keep me in the condition that I am now. I don’t know if I will be worse tomorrow. I don’t know what will happen later. But so far, I am okay. I live a normal life.