Current and Future Therapies for Osteoporosis

  • David M. Reid


Management of the fractures associated with osteoporosis consumes £942 million of resources annually in the United Kingdom and the burden of fractures is due to increase because of demographic change. Against this background new and innovative therapies are, or will shortly become, available. The current therapies most commonly used consist of the anti-resorptive agents hormone replacement therapy (HRT), bisphosphonates, the selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs) and calcium and vitamin D preparations. This chapter examines the issue of targeting therapy and debates the relative importance of these drugs in clinical practice. It examines new data showing that low dose HRT can be used effectively in the elderly and draws early conclusions on the likely impact of a new bisphosphonate, risedronate, compared with etidronate and alendronate, in the prevention and treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis. Future possible developments, such as intravenous therapy and anabolic agents, such as parathyroid hormone are examined. Finally an individual approach to the choice of therapy is presented to stimulate debate as to a treatment schema.


Bone Mineral Density Postmenopausal Woman Bone Mass Vertebral Fracture Hormone Replacement Therapy 
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  • David M. Reid

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