A bone disease primarily characterized by an enlargement and abnormal bone structure and caused by an overproduction of poor quality bone. Paget’s disease causes joint dysfunction in most patients and may also cause bone pain. When the disease occurs in children or adolescents, it is called juvenile Paget’s disease, hyperostosis corticolis deformans juvenilis, or hereditary hyperphosphatasia. Paget’s disease most commonly affects the hip, spine, pelvis, skull, tibia, and humerus.
The disease can be fetal, particularly when associated with heart failure, bone sarcoma, or giant cell tumor.
Causes of Paget’s disease
Although the disease’s exact cause isn’t known, one theory suggests that a slow or dormant viral infection (possibly mumps) causes a dormant viral infection (possibly mumps) causes a dormant skeletal infection, which surfaces many years later as Paget’s disease.
Symptoms of Paget’s disease
Symptoms vary, depending on degree of involvement and which bones are affected. The skull may enlarge, resulting in frontal bossing and a larger hat size. Hearing loss may be due to petrous ridge Paget’s disease invasion of the cochlea.
There may be headaches, dizziness, and bulging scalp veins. Vertebrae may enlarge, weaken, and fracture, resulting in a loss in body height and a stooped forward posturing. Involved vertebrae may compress nerves from the spinal cord, resulting in pain, dysesthesias, weakness, or even lower extremity paraparesis or paraplegia. Long bones become bowed, resulting in reduced function, abnormal gait, and contractures. The involved bone has a tendency to fracture.
Complications of Paget’s disease
Involved sites may fracture easily after only minor trauma. These fractures heal slowly and usually incompletely. Vertebral collapse or vascular changes that affect the spinal cord could lead to paraplegia. Bony impingement on the cranial nerves may cause blindness and hearing loss with tinnitus and vertigo.
Other complications include osteoarthritis, sarcoma, hypertension, renal calculi, gout, hypocalcaemia, heart failure, and a waddling gait (from softened pelvic bones.)
Diagnosis of Paget’s disease
The characteristic X-ray appearance of enlarged bones with alternating areas of increased resorption and formation of bone together with a raised alkaline phosphatase level is usually sufficient to make the diagnosis.
Differentiating Paget’s disease from secondary bone tumors, especially prostate cancer can be difficult.
Several very characteristic X-ray findings support a diagnosis of Paget’s disease. However, if there is no history to help, it can sometimes be impossible to differentiate on x-ray, in these situations biopsy is usually required.
Radionuclide bone scans are useful in showing the extent of bone involvement but do not differentiate Paget’s from other bone diseases. CT and MRI scans are often used to show nerve or brain abnormalities.
Audiological testing can differentiate between nerve deafness and involvement of the conducting ossicles.
Blood and urine tests can give more information about the rate of bone turnover but are seldom required.
Alkaline phosphatase, type 1 procollagen carboxyterminal peptide, and osteocalcin all reflect bone formation. Urine hydroxyproline or pyridinum cross-linked peptides reflect bone. In general, the level of alkaline phosphatase reflects both the extent of bony involvement and the activity of disease.
Homeopathic treatment for Paget’s disease
Homeopathy is one of the most popular holistic systems of medicine. The selection of remedy is based upon the theory of individualization and symptoms similarity by using holistic approach. This is the only way through which a state of complete health can be regained by removing all the sign and symptoms from which the patient is suffering. The aim of homeopathy is not only to treat Paget’s disease but to address its underlying cause and individual susceptibility. As far as therapeutic medication is concerned, several remedies are available to treat Paget’s disease that can be selected on the basis of cause, sensations and modalities of the complaints. For individualized remedy selection and treatment, the patient should consult a qualified homeopathic doctor in person. There are following remedies which are helpful in the treatment of Paget’s disease:
Calcaria Phos, Phosphoric Acid, Fluoric Acid, Phosphorous, Calcaria Carb, Ferrum Met, Iodium, Kreosote, Ferrum Aceticum, Iridium Met, and many other medicines.