Osteoporosis treatment - results
Reference 2 presents results of a study using Ibandronate (Boniva™). The study followed 2946 postmenopausal women with a low bone-mineral density score at the lumbar spine in at least one vertebra, and one to four prevalent vertebral fractures. Patients received placebo or oral ibandronate administered either daily (2.5 mg) or intermittently (20 mg every other day for 12 doses every 3 months).
At the end of three years, A total of 149 patients suffered at least one new vertebral fracture during the trial. The rate of patients with new incident vertebral fractures at year 3 was estimated to be 9.6% (Margin of Error 7.5%–11.7%) for the placebo group, 4.7% (Margin of Error 3.2%–6.2%)for the daily dosage patients, and 4.9% (Margin of Error 3.4–6.4) for the intermittent ibandronate group.
The relative risk reductions compared with placebo were 62% ( Margin of Error 41%–75%) for the daily comsuming patients, and 50% (Margin of Error 26%–66%) for the intermittent group. These numbers are significant; fractures in the elderly often significantly diminish their quality of life, and Ibandronate definitely reduces their risk by about a factor of 2.
Comparable results (albeit with larger Margins of Error) were reported in previous publications. Reference 3 deals with the fracture-preventing effects of Risedronate (Actonel™) on postmenopausal women with osteoporosis. Reference 4 deals with the effect of Risedronate on the risk of hip fracture in elderly women. Reference 5 deals with the effect of alendronate (Fosamax™) on risk of fracture in women with existing vertebral fractures. All these results show a significant protection for women with osteoporosis in terms of fracture prevention.
Bisphosphonates are not the only treatment available for osteoporosis. We suggest you read Dr. Ott's web page for all the types of treatment available.
Like all medications, some adverse reactions ("side effects") are possible. We deal with these next.
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