Endocrinology and Diabetes

Bone health and calcium metabolism

  • What are bone health and calcium disorders?

    Bones are living structures which changes constantly and are made of mineralised deposits of calcium and phosphate. Healthy bones during childhood and adolescents are important in preventing fractures later in life.

    Calcium and phosphate metabolic disorders are disorders that are characterised by abnormalities in the processing of calcium or phosphate. These disorders can affect the absorption, transport, storage and use of these minerals. 

    Common problems with bone health, calcium and phosphate disorders are:

    • Low bone density and osteoporosis
    • Osteogenesis imperfecta 
    • Rickets
    • Vitamin D deficiency
    • Primary hypoparathyroidism (e.g. sometimes seen as part of DiGeorge syndrome)
    • X-linked hypophosphatemia

    For health professionals

    Bone Health Clinic

    The Bone health clinic is run fortnightly and allows for patients and families to have targeted, multidisciplinary care of conditions such as skeletal fragility, metabolic bone disease and rickets. The clinic includes Endocrinologists with specific expertise in bone and mineral medicine, and allied health support with specialized physiotherapy and occupational therapy. Patients attending bone health clinic can aim to have other related appointments (bone density scans, bisphosphonate infusions) on the same day to minimize attendance at RCH. 

    APEG position statement re bisphosphonates

    For management of vitamin D deficiency, please refer to the RCH clinical practice guidelines: Vitamin D clinical practice guideline


    For patients and families

    Better Health Channel Victoria – calcium intake

    Bisphosphonates information sheet