Osteoporosis

05 October 2004

Bisphosphonates to prevent and treat osteoporosis

The bisphosphonates form a class of drug which prevents and treats osteoporosis with no hormonal effects. While oestrogen as HRT is the most suitable method to prevent osteoporosis, the bisphosphonates are useful if there are contraindications for oestrogen therapy.

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The bisphosphonates form a class of drug which prevents and treats osteoporosis with no hormonal effects. While oestrogen as HRT is the most suitable method to prevent osteoporosis, the bisphosphonates are useful if there are contraindications for oestrogen therapy.

Although very effective, the bisphosphonates as oral medication have the disadvantage that they are poorly absorbed through the intestine. Large doses lead to potentially severe side-effects such as abdominal pain, diarrhoea or constipation. If taken orally, they should best be taken outside normal mealtimes to improve absorption.

Bisphosphonates should not be taken with antacids since these will decrease their efficacy.

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Healthy Bones

Tereza is the CEO of the National Osteoporosis Foundation and worked as a Nursing Sister in the field of Osteoporosis for 18 years prior to her appointment with the Foundation. She used to be the Educational Officer for the Foundation and co-wrote the patient brochure on Osteoporosis. Read more

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