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About two million Sri Lankan women suffer from crippling, even fatal bone disease, squeezing an already stretched state healthcare system that spends to look after them. About two million Sri Lankan women suffer from crippling, even fatal bone disease, squeezing an already stretched state healthcare system that spends to look after them.

Women, especially aging women, are most susceptible to osteoporosis – a disease where bones lose its calcium, reducing mineral bone density.

That makes bones, mainly in weight bearing regions like the spine, the hips or the forearm, brittle and more likely to fracture causing intense pain.

Women often never know they have it until they fall and suffer an injury. But although it is just after heart disease in seriousness, there are no estimates as to how much the state spends on supporting osteoporosis sufferers.

“The illness costs a lot of money and the state incurs huge costs to maintain patients in terms of doctors consultations, tests, new limbs, drugs, exercises,” Dr. Lalith Wijeratna, Consultant Rheumatologist at the National Hospital in Colombo, said.

“But there are no estimates available as to how many of the