Common drugs for osteoporosis

Common drugs for osteoporosis aim to increase and maintain bone mass by slowing down the loss of bone through natural causes.

Drugs for osteoporosis:

1-Calcium

For those who have an elevated risk of developing osteoporosis, the intake of calcium through diet as well as medicines is important. Calcium supplements supply a daily dose of calcium that goes into the maintenance of strong bones and teeth.

Calcium supplements have to be taken in along with Vitamin D as the latter helps absorb calcium. The intake of calcium supplements may have little to no effect if the calcium supplied is not absorbed by the body.

2- Bisphosphonates

These are taken in after the onset of the disease. Their action helps to increase bone density and preserve bone mass. Thus, they are helpful for bones that are most susceptible to fractures like the hip and the spine.

Experts believe that these drugs for osteoporosis are particularly useful for treating young adults suffering from osteoporosis. Patients who use medications in the long term are also put on bisphosphonates to prevent the development of osteoporosis.

Bisphosphonates are found in drugs like Fosamax, Boniva and Actonel. These may be taken orally or intravenously. However, the drug is associated with side effects including stomach problems, problems with swallowing etc.

Patients may develop inflammation in the esophagus or ulcers due to the regular use of these drugs for osteoporosis. In order to avoid these side effects, doctors may prescribe the intake of bisphosphonates once in a month.

3- Raloxifene

These drugs for osteoporosis mimic the action of estrogen in women suffering from osteoporosis induced by estrogen depletion. Raloxifene does not have the side effects associated with estrogen and is therefore more desirable than estrogen replacement therapy. Some women may experience hot flashes due to the intake of Raloxifene.

4- Calcitonin

This is a natural hormone produced by the body that helps preserve bone mass. Drugs for osteoporosis containing Calcitonin is effective in preventing fracture of the spine and hip. Generally, Calcitonin is administered as a nasal spray and it is prescribed for patients who cannot take in Bisphosphonates.

5- Teriparatide

An effective drug that promotes bone regeneration in postmenopausal men and women, the drug is injected under the skin once a day.

6- Hormone therapy

When hormone replacement therapy is started immediately after menopause, it can help maintain bone mass. But, hormone therapy may have severe side effects and due to this, it is not considered as one of the best drugs for osteoporosis.

The above drugs for osteoporosis may help reducing bone loss.

This field is the subject of several studies and new drugs for osteoporosis are being explored all the time.

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