Tuesday, December 27, 2011

FDA Issues Warning on Use of Common Drugs for Osteoporosis

The FDA has issued a label change for biphosphonate drugs (Fosamax, Actonel, Boniva, and Reclast). Because of upper leg fractures, jaw necrosis, and esophageal cancers that have been associated with these drugs, it is no longer appropriate to use them for more than 3-5 years for osteoporosis. However, there is no conclusive evidence that using them for such a short time is effective in the long run. Further, the warning did not address using the drugs for the lesser condition of osteopenia. My advice usually is to avoid the drugs and balance moderate doses of calcium and magnesium with high doses of vitamin D3. Transdermal natural progesterone might be added if needed. See the FDA warning label for bisphosphonate drugs (click here).

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