Osteoporosis study looking for participants

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Baton Rouge resident Tamara Jackson had one thought on her mind heading into a clinic.

"How my bone density is, and if there's things I can do to keep it from worsening and if I'm on the right path to help keep that up," said Jackson.

Jackson has a family history of osteoporosis, and when a friend close to her age discovered she had low bone density in her hip, Jackson decided to take action.

"I'm in the healthcare profession and so I see people as they get older, they fall, they break bones and the recovery is tremendous. So, if you can prevent it early it's a good way to help prevent it."

To find out the state of her bones, Jackson went to the Louisiana Osteoporosis Study.

"Osteoporosis is a disease that things and weakens your bones that makes you susceptible to fractures," explained researcher Yan Zhia.  "It's also called a silent disease because there are often no signs or symptoms of bone loss until the bones become so weak that a sudden bump or fall could cause a fracture."

The study is being conducted through Tulane University, and it's looking for about 20,000 male and female participants.

In a two hour appointment, blood samples are taken and a bone density scan is preformed all for free.  Then the clinicians will go over the results with you and share steps to take to improve your bone health.

"Our purpose for this study is to identify the risk factors for osteoporosis and related risk factors. The result will help develop more effective treatment or prevention methods in the future," said Zhia.

To qualify, you must:

-          Be at least 18 years old

-          Have no severe uncontrolled chronic disease

-          Be willing to attend the scheduled exam for bone densitometry and muscle strength measurements and to have a small amount of blood drawn.

Participants do receive a small compensation for their time.  To find out if you qualify, call (225) 381-2721 or (225)381-2723 or email bonesstudybatonrouge@tulane.edu.

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