Unveiling the interdependence of brains, bones and behavior.
Establishing the interconnections between the brain and the organ systems of the body, and how diseases must be analyzed in terms of these interconnections — not just mere, site-specific afflictions of the organs or organ systems affected by the symptoms — is a key focus of integrative medicine. Today, osteoporosis is an exciting research topic because studies are finding that it is not just a disease of the bones.
Recent research implies an intimate association between depression and osteoporosis; treating depression may be an important strategy in the prevention of osteoporosis. Furthermore, people who have major depressive disorder (MDD) as well as borderline personality disorder (BPD) have been shown to be at an even greater risk for developing osteoporosis. These findings have opened up new doors for research in integrative medicine.
Neuropsychosteology is an emerging integrative discipline geared towards clarifying the interrelationships of the brain, behavior, and the skeleton. As new research is done in this field, these interrelationships will become clearer. This will serve to further highlight the importance of treating the patient holistically, and not merely as the sum of his or her parts.
1. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA2006 Nov 7; 103:16876-81 Depression induces bone loss through stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system Yirmiya R et al
2. Psychosom Med 2006 Sep/Oct; 68:669-74 Bone mineral density, bone turnover, and osteoprotegerin in personality disorder. Kahl KG et al.
Eric R. Braverman, M.D.
Dr. Braverman is a Summa Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Brandeis University and NYU Medical School, did brain research at Harvard Medical School, and trained at an affiliate of Yale Medical School. He is acknowledged worldwide as an expert in brain-based diagnosis and treatment, and he lectures to and trains doctors in anti-aging medicine.