DefinitionPaget's disease is a bone condition that results in enlarged and deformed bones. It is a long-term condition. Any bone in the body can be affected. However, the most common sites are the spine, skull, pelvis, thighs, and lower legs.
|Normal Bone Structure|
|Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.|
CausesPaget's disease is caused by a malfunction in bone formation. Normally, bones are constantly being broken down and rebuilt. With Paget's disease, bones are broken down abnormally fast, and new bone replacement is loose and bulky, instead of strong and compact. These poorly formed bones may become weak. They also may bend over time.The exact cause of this bone malformation is unknown. Paget's disease may be triggered early in life by a viral infection.
Risk FactorsPaget's disease is more common in people who:
- Have a family history, especially in a parent, sibling, or child
- Are of Northern European decent
- Are aged 55 years or older
SymptomsMost people with Paget's disease don't have symptoms. For those with symptoms, Paget's disease may cause:
- Chronic bone pain, especially legs, hips, or spine
- Swelling or deformity of a limb
- Broken bones
- Bowing of a limb
- Damaged cartilage in the joints
- Increased head size
- Facial pain
- Hearing loss
DiagnosisYour doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. Your doctor will order a blood test.Imaging tests take pictures of internal body structures. These are done with:
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