News Release

May 8, 2007

Contact: Christopher DeFrancesco, 860-679-3914

Osteoporosis: Beatable, Treatable

UConn Health Center Offering Free Screenings

FARMINGTON, CONN. – Free bone density tests are available at the University of Connecticut Health Center in May as part of Osteoporosis Awareness and Prevention Month.

The Health Center is working with the National Osteoporosis Foundation to encourage people to take steps to protect their bone health. The theme this year is, “Osteoporosis. It’s Beatable. It’s Treatable.”

Osteoporosis is a disease that weakens bones, often progressing painlessly until they become too fragile and break. Millions of Americans are at risk, and women are four times more likely than men to suffer from osteoporosis. People age 50 and older are most susceptible.

“Osteoporosis is preventable and treatable,” says Pamela Taxel, M.D., an endocrinologist at the New England Musculoskeletal Institute, part of the UConn Health Center. “It’s preventable by maintaining bone health with adequate amounts of calcium, vitamin D and exercise, and treatable with medication.”

The free bone density heel screenings are Tuesday, May 15, from 6 to 8 p.m., at the Medical Arts Research Building, and Wednesday, May 23, from 4 to 6 p.m. in the Keller Auditorium lobby, both on the UConn Health Center campus in Farmington.

“Testing bone density is easy, fast and painless, and the surest way to determine your risk of future fracture.” Dr. Taxel says. “Women 65 and older should get screened, as should all women who have significant risk factors for osteoporosis, such as early menopause, fracture as an adult, or use of steroid medications, to name a few. All women should discuss their personal risk factors with their physician."

Additionally, the Health Center is offering a free program about preventing and managing osteoporosis on Wednesday, May 23, from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Henry Low M.D. Learning Center, immediately following the screening. Speakers will include Dr. Taxel and Jo-Anne Smith, M.D., also of the New England Musculoskeletal Institute. To register for “Better Bones for a Better Life,” call 860-679-7692. Registration is required. The screenings are open to both men and women. 

UConn Health includes the schools of medicine and dental medicine, the UConn Medical Group, University Dentists, and John Dempsey Hospital. Home to Bioscience Connecticut, UConn Health pursues a mission of providing outstanding health care education in an environment of exemplary patient care, research and public service. More information about UConn Health is available at

Note: News professionals are invited to visit the UConn Health Today news page ( for regularly updated news and feature stories, photos and media stories. News releases are archived at UConn Health news and information is also available on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.