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Gonul Erdinc, Turkey

Gonul Erdinc, 68, is a retired teacher who was diagnosed with osteoporosis at the age of 64. After suffering from recurrent back pain, and having noticed that she was increasingly ‘hunched over’, Gonul went to her doctor. A subsequent bone mineral density text showed that she had osteoporosis. Although her doctor had prescribed medicine, Gonul did not take it regularly and even discontinued therapy completely for a few years.

Gonul Erdinc, TurkeyThen, seven months ago, as she was bending forward to hug her grandchild, Gonul suddenly felt a severe pain in her back. She returned to her doctor who diagnosed an osteoporotic vertebral fracture. Gonul resumed her medication, and after treatment of the acute post-fracture phase, was put on a regular exercise and walking program. Now, Gonul takes her medicine regularly and makes sure she follows her doctor’s advice. Her exercise program includes range of motion exercises for the neck, and stretching and strengthening exercises for all the muscles of the body, especially the back extensors’ muscle. She also jogs three days a week.

“Since doing these exercises I feel better and more active,” says Gonul. Before beginning the exercise program, she had suffered severe pain after doing the housework or shopping. “Now I am able to do the housework independently and go shopping by myself without pain. However, I’m careful. When I go shopping I try to carry small, light shopping bags rather than heavy ones.” Gonul believes that her regular exercise is as effective as a pain relieving drug for her back pain and says, “I’m happy that exercise has become part of my daily life – I would recommend it for everyone”.

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