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A condition in which the amount of bone is lower than the normal, i.e. a bone mineral density T score of -1.0 to -2.5.


Osteopenia may be caused by the resorption of bone at a rate that exceeds synthesis of bone. The condition does not imply disease but describes the amount of the bone present. Nevertheless, osteopenia may be a precursor condition to osteoporosis, a bone disease.

Word origin: osteo, refers to bone + penia, poverty.
Related phrases: spaceflight osteopenia.

Compare: osteopetrosis.
See also: osteoporosis.