Well, I just had a DXA bone scan today, which they recommend every 2 years for all men over 70 and women over 65, but younger, if you have risk factors. And I found out that Type 1 in particular is considered a risk factor. I'm 63, but I guess I count as having a risk factor.
Turned out that I have osteopenia (low bone mineral density, but not as low as in osteoporosis) in the femurs, but not in the spine. That surprised me, because I haven't had diabetes as long as some (It started at age 43 and I was formally diagnosed at 45), and osteoporosis doesn't run in my family. :-(
The risk factors include normal to low BMI, thin bone structure, smoking, auto-immune diseases, excessive drinking, not enough calcium and vitamin D in bone-forming years, family history, history of anorexia (diabulimia!) and inactivity. I do have thin bone structure, autoimmune diseases, and (ashamedly!) inactivity.
So there is definite evidence that women (but also men) with Type 1 are at increased risk, and osteopenia is a risk factor for osteoporosis. One article said that 50% of Caucasian women will break a bone at some point in their lives.
But the really surprising fact is that, although Type 2 women tend to have INCREASED bone mineral density, at least partly attributable to the fact that their bones get more weight-bearing exercise, they are also at increased risk of fractures. And no one knows why.
I also read up on treatment, and there is no general consensus there. On the one hand, taking drugs like bisphosphonates and other drugs could actually increase bone mass to some extent, but in osteopenia, the person might never experience a fracture anyway, and why take a drug that may not be needed? Osteoporosis, being more severe, with a higher risk of fracture is another story, but again, the question is why wait until you are at great risk?
So I'm going to continue reading up about it, and going to delay making any kind of decision until I have a chance to talk with both my PCP's APN, and my Endo's APN -- I'm taking enough drugs as it is, and since all the available drugs have unpleasant side effects, I'm not going to rush into anything. But I would be interested in any insight any of you may have! :-)