Tags: osteoporosis | women | calcium | Vitamin D | osteoporosis drugs | biophosphonate

Osteoporosis Drugs: Which Ones Are Best?

Friday, 20 Dec 2013 10:47 PM

Did you know that osteoporosis is estimated to affect 200 million women worldwide?

Osteoporosis causes more than 8.9 million fractures per year across the globe. One in three women over 50 experiences osteoporosis and 1 in 5 men is subjected to fractures. With such high incidence, osteoporosis is one of the leading problems to be tackled with growing age.
 
Osteoporosis is a condition characterized by brittle bones. There is credible to severe loss in bone density and the bones become more susceptible to fractures.
 
The main causes for osteoporosis have been found to be lack of proper absorption of calcium in the body. This is also affected by the availability of vitamin D since it plays a crucial role in the resorption of calcium in the gut.
 
What to look for in osteoporosis drugs? Osteoporosis drugs should have good amounts of calcium and vitamin D. Postmenopausal women need around 1,500 milligrams of calcium and 1,000 units of vitamin D per day.
 
There are many types of osteoporosis drugs that are commonly administered.

Antiresorptive medicines such as biophosphonates work by slowing the bone breakdown process. In older people, bone breakdown happens at a faster rate than bone rebuilding. Biophosphonates help preserve bone density during menopause. Side effects of biophosphonates include heartburn and upset stomach. Commonly prescribed biophosphonates include Fosamax, Actonel, Boniva, and Zoledronic Acid.

Calcitonin, denosumab, and estrogen are other antiresorptive osteoporosis drugs. Hormone therapy like administering estrogen can increase the risk of heart attack.

Osteoporosis drugs such as teriperatide are anabolic drugs that increase the rate of bone formation and help counter accelerated bone loss in older men and women. Teriperatide is the only anabolic osteoporosis drug approved by FDA.

Parathyroid hormone treatment is more expensive (about $7,000 per year) and needs to be taken as injections at least for a period of two years.

How to rate osteoporosis drugs? Osteoporosis drugs should perform well in bone resorption marker tests. This will give the indication of how well the osteoporosis drugs are having an effect on controlling bone loss. Consult your physician in choosing the best osteoporosis drug that suits you.

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Osteoporosis drugs such as resorptive medications and anabolic drugs can help combat osteoporosis effectively in men and women by decreasing bone loss and increasing bone formation.
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Friday, 20 Dec 2013 10:47 PM
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