What patients and families need to know
Bone Health Program
Reducing Risk of Fractures and Other Injuries
Certain illnesses and medications can affect the strength and density of a child’s bones. We created the Bone Health Program to help all young patients maintain strong bones and reduce the risk of broken bones (fractures) and other injuries.
From healthy kids with broken bones (fractures) to survivors of complex conditions and children with disorders that affect bone growth, the Bone Health Program at Children’s National focuses on optimizing every child’s bone health and reducing his or her risk of future fractures. Our world-renowned expertise and personalized approach help your child avoid fractures and build strong, healthy bones to improve their mobility and quality of life.
Children’s National Bone Health Program: Why Choose Us?
The Children's National Bone Health Program specializes in caring for healthy children, children with inherited (genetic) bone conditions, and children whose bones have been damaged from illness or poor nutrition. Our team of experts gets to know every child personally and approaches each treatment with your child’s future in mind. Our knowledge of the field and dedication to enhancing treatments to meet the needs of each child help us provide the best possible care for children with a broad range of bone health conditions.
Highlights of our program include:
- Bone health expertise: Our depth of expertise includes a multidisciplinary team led by one of the world’s leading pediatric bone health experts, Laura Tosi, MD. With more than 30 years of experience, Dr. Tosi has pioneered care, treatment, and research for many rare bone disorders.
- Team approach: Our collaborative approach helps your child get the most out of each clinic visit. Here, endocrinologists, orthopaedists, geneticists, and advanced practice nurses, all of whom specialize in bone disease, come together to deliver the best care for your child. Meet the team.
- Precise diagnosis: We are one of the few pediatric programs in the country offering on-site technology for measuring bone quality, including dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry or DXA scan.
- Safe and accurate measurement of bone density: Our team only uses Certified Bone Densitometry Technologists (CBDT®). These professionals consistently meet the highest levels of safety and accuracy for performing bone density measurements.
- Advanced treatments: We offer pamidronate and zoledronate intravenous infusions for the treatment of bone fragility. Our dedicated Bone Health nurse practitioner administers these bone-strengthening medications, ensuring that your child is always in the hands of a qualified, caring expert.
- Research: Your child’s care is based on the latest advances in bone health care. Our ongoing partnership with the National Institutes of Health (NIH), one of the largest research institutions in the US, is helping us learn more about the basic science behind complex bone conditions. For example, we are a site for the NIH-sponsored study to learn about the natural history of Brittle Bone Disease (Osteogenesis imperfecta). We provide surgical care for NIH patients with severe overgrowth syndromes, and we assist with the training of NIH/Children’s National endocrinology fellows. We also study the genetics of what makes bones strong, why they fracture, and the impact of environmental factors, such as exercise and nutrition, on bone formation.
Pediatric Bone Disease Treatments at Children’s National
We offer the full range of pediatric bone health treatments, including multidisciplinary counseling and advanced medical therapies that are not widely available. We pride ourselves in spending a lot of one-on-one time with children and their families. This helps us tailor your child’s treatment and help him or her achieve the best possible outcome. Learn more about bone health treatments.
Why Healthy Bones Are Important
Your child’s bone health plays an important role in his or her future health and quality of life. During childhood, bones get big and strong by storing important minerals, such as calcium.
Children who are not able to build strong bones often cannot catch up in adulthood. That’s why we focus on addressing bone health issues as early in childhood as possible.
The good news is your child’s bones are constantly changing. With proper treatment, he or she may be able to improve his or her bone quality and reduce future fracture risk, as well as the negative impact of many bone health conditions. Improving bone health during childhood helps prevent or delay broken bones later in life.
For more information or to make an appointment, call us at 202-476-2112.