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Graciela Gimenez

Graciela was born in the city of Goya in the province of Corrientes, Argentina. She married young at age 19 and went on to have five children, 15 grandchildren (in the photo, Ignacio 31 years of age, and Martina, 14 years of age) and six great-grandchildren! She always enjoyed family gatherings, and her hobbies included home decoration and studying French.

Graciela went through early menopause, and at the age of 45 she was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis for which she was prescribed, among other drugs, glucocorticoids over a long period of time. In retrospect, it is clear that Graciela had two significant risk factors for the development of osteoporosis: early menopause and long-term use of glucocorticoids, both factors which accelerate bone loss.

At the age of 78, Graciela began to experience severe pain in her spine. After consulting with spine specialists, a vertebral fracture was identified and a vertebroplasty procedure was performed. The pain diminished, but in time she developed new vertebral fractures. At that time Graciela’s doctors carried out more extensive assessments, and she was subsequently treated with zoledronic acid for severe osteoporosis, due to multiple risk factors.

Despite her clinical improvement, after 14 months Graciela sustained a femoral neck (hip) fracture. Later she was prescribed treatment with teriparatide, with positive clinical results. She was able to walk and resume many of her daily activities at home. Currently, she has developed fractures in her left foot, which is why she is momentarily using a wheelchair. She is fortunate to have a large and loving family for support!

It’s been difficult, but in spite of her multiple fractures, Graciela has not lost her joy of life or her beauty.