In response to research and media reports suggesting a link between a certain class of osteoporosis drugs – known as oral bisphosphonates – and femur fractures, the FDA announced yesterday that it is working with outside experts to insure that the osteoporosis drugs are safe.
Fosamax, Actonel, Boniva and Reclast are all oral bisphosphonates, the class of drugs under investigation. Some have claimed that long-term use of these drugs raises the risk of an unusual type of femur fracture just below the hip that is known as a subtrochantreric fracture.
The Wall Street Journal reports that two studies that were presented this week at the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons’ annual meeting suggests that long-term use of Fosamax and Boniva (where “long-term” means four or more years of use) may lead to reduced “bone structural integrity.”
In 2008, the FDA warned that Fosamax had been lined to serious joint pain.
The FDA cautioned yesterday, however, that people taking oral bisphosphonates should not stop taking the drugs without first consulting with their physicians. At this point, the FDA believes that the benefits of Fosamax and the other oral bisphosphonates outweigh the potential risks that it is investigating.
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