Uni partnership focuses on bone health

Physiotherapy students at Glasgow Caledonian University have teamed up with our Glasgow team to offer information on bone health and HIV.

Our work with the students is part of an annual partnership we have developed with the University’s School of Health and Life Sciences to provide real-world experience to students.

The physio students approached us for help with their assignment, asking for potential HIV topics relevant to their course. Given its importance for mobility, bone health was an obvious choice. Various studies have identified that people living with HIV are as much as three times more likely to develop osteoporosis, a condition which causes bones to lose their strength and become more fragile.

The HIV virus itself, along with treatments for the condition are factors contributing to osteoporosis. Meanwhile, other factors including low body weight, reduced testosterone levels, smoking, and drinking alcohol are also more common among people living with HIV.

As part of their course assessment, the students developed a website with information and advice for people living with HIV to promote good bone health. Students also joined us at a workshop for service users highlighting practical advice on nutrition and exercise to improve bone health. The project has provided us with educational resources that will be useful in our work moving forward.

We are grateful to the students and faculty staff at Glasgow Caledonian University for their continuing support of our work. If you are living with HIV and have concerns about bone health, or any other aspect of your health and wellbeing, you can get in touch for advice and support.