Paget's Disease

Overview of Paget's Disease

A bone disorder in which the bone remodeling process is disrupted. Certain medications can help to reduce the effects of this disease. In some more complex scenarios, your doctor may perform surgery to help you overcome this disease.

In Paget’s disease, the normal recycling process of bones is disrupted. The old bone tissues degenerate really quickly and as a result, the new bone forms is pretty fragile and misshapen. One may become more vulnerable to this disease if it already exists in his/her family. It is more likely to happen at one age.
Certain medications can help to reduce the effects of this disease. In some more complex scenarios, your doctor may perform surgery to help you overcome this disease.

What is Paget’s disease?

It’s the most common bone disorder after arthritis.
Paget’s disease is basically a disorder of the bone remodeling process in which the body absorbs old bone and forms abnormal new bones. Due to the degenerative process of old bone tissues, new abnormal bones may generate in incorrect locations. Some old bones that are not to be removed might also get degenerated.
The bones of a Paget disease patient become fragile and sensitive over time and require a long time to heal as the bone renewal process gets slowed and disrupted.

Signs and Symptoms of Paget's Disease

Usually, the patients of Paget’s disease do not experience any symptoms. This disease is more likely to cause internal damage and rarely shows its presence without causing much harm. Due to this, the patients of this disease are often misdiagnosed as well.

Some common symptoms of Paget’s disease include:


  • Bone/joint pain
  • Swelling of joints
  • Tender joints
  • Redness of the skin around joints or bones
  • Delayed healing of bones
  • Weakness in bones
  • Easily fractured bones


Types of Paget's Disease

Causes of Paget's Disease

The cause of this disease is still to be found. This disease in some cases tends to run in families. An infection due to measles during childhood can cause this disease.


Risk Factors of Paget's Disease

This bone disorder occurs most commonly in these bones:

  • Pelvis area

Paget’s disease in the pelvis area can cause hip pain.

  • Spine

This disease in the spine can cause numbness, tingling, or pain in the arms or legs. As the nerve roots in the spine can get compressed.

  • Skull

This disorder in the skull can cause an overgrowth of bone and cause hearing loss or severe headaches.

  • Thighbone (Femur) and Shinbone (Tibia)

As the bones become weaker and more fragile, an individual can become bow-legged ( the legs are curved outwards while the feet and ankles touch). Due to overgrown and misshapen bones, one may feel extra stress on joints. This can cause osteoarthritis in the knee or hip.


Timely detection and proper treatment of this disease in most cases bear fruitful results. In some cases due to co-morbidities and more complex scenarios, Paget’s disease can cause more serious health problems like:

  • Hearing impairment
  • Heart issues
  • Nervous system issues
  • Arthritis
  • Teeth loosening


In very rare cases, a person may develop “Paget’s Sarcoma”. Only 1% of patients with Paget’s disease suffer from this cancer.



While there is no known way to prevent Paget's disease, there are some things you can do to reduce your risk of developing it or to manage its symptoms:

  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle: Eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly can help keep your bones strong and reduce your risk of developing Paget's disease.
  • Get regular checkups: Regular bone density scans and blood tests can help detect Paget's disease early before symptoms occur.
  • Take vitamin D and calcium supplements: These supplements can help strengthen your bones and reduce your risk of developing Paget's disease.
  • Avoid falls: Falling can increase your risk of breaking a bone, which can worsen symptoms of Paget's disease.
  • Talk to your doctor about medications: In some cases, medications such as bisphosphonates may be prescribed to slow the progression of Paget's disease and reduce its symptoms.

It's also important to keep in mind that Paget's disease is a rare condition, and many people who have it are able to manage their symptoms effectively with treatment. If you are concerned about your risk of developing Paget's disease or have symptoms that may indicate it, speak with your doctor for personalized advice and guidance.



Usually, Paget’s disease is identified by conducting a blood test and an X-Ray or a nuclear imaging test.

Blood tests determine the level of Alkaline Phosphatase (APL) in the patient’s body. If someone is suffering from Paget’s disease, he/she would have elevated levels of APL. However, raised levels of ALP do not necessarily mean that the person has Paget’s disease. The levels may be raised due to some other medical condition. And in some cases, people who actually had Paget’s disease had normal ALP levels.
Therefore, an X-Ray is also required for the confirmation of the disease. X-rays clearly show the structure of the bone and your doctor will be able to see if the bones are enlarged or misshapen. In some cases, a test called scintigraphy is also conducted. This is a nuclear imaging test and gives more accurate, precise, and detailed results. This test shows those areas where a lot of bone renewal processes are taking place.

Depending on the patient's condition, the following tests can also be done:

Treatment of Paget's Disease | When to Consult a Doctor

Please note, currently, there is no cure for this disease. Though, with medication, diet, and lifestyle changes, most of the complications and effects of this disease can be reduced.

Your healthcare provider may prescribe you medication containing Bisphosphonates ( a class of drugs that prevents the loss of bone density as they contain phosphate as the main element).  This helps in regulating bone growth. Physiotherapy or occupational therapy can also bear fruitful results for Paget’s disease patients.

Some medical equipment like:

  • A walking stick
  • Braces for the spine (help improve the spine posture)
  • Orthotics (placed inside shoes for better feet support)

In more severe cases, your doctor may suggest surgery. Procedures like:

  • Realignment of bones
  • Hip replacement/ knee replacement
  • Straightening the deformed bones
  • Reposition bones

Diet and nutrition play a very important role in keeping one’s bones strong. Doctors recommend diets enriched in Calcium and vitamin D to Paget’s disease patients.  

You can consult any Endocrinologist or Rheumatologist for the treatment of Paget’s disease. Timely detection and care can help in relieving the long-term effects of this disease. You can easily find some of the best Endocrinologists or Rheumatologists anywhere in Pakistan via