A lot of discoveries have been done over the past few decades in making effort to finding lasting solutions for osteoporosis complications. These have led to the market being rich in several of options for medications which can be confusing sometimes. It is because of these that we want to discourse the best modalities of identifying the right osteoporosis medications for patients. Even as you consider settling for certain medications, doctor Akoury advices that in that medication, you must ensure that you are getting enough supply of calcium and vitamin D. Remember that vitamin D is now officially being reorganize as key player in osteoporosis. It must be appreciated that the supply of these two elements must not be compromised and that would mean that for guaranteed sufficiency a prescription for vitamin D may become necessary. These supplements must be taken continually even when you are on osteoporosis medicines. Like for instance a postmenopausal woman will require 1,500 milligrams calcium daily, plus 1,000 units of vitamin D. Some need prescription-strength vitamin D (Calcitriol). This deficiency is a serious problem.
Besides that weight bearing exercise would be very important with total elimination of smoking and alcohol nevertheless, if you have to drink, then it must be moderate. Doctor Akoury further advices that you must be in constant consultation with your doctor about getting a bone re-sorption marker test that is either blood or urine test. This will actually help you identify whether your osteoporosis medicine is having an effect on bone loss or not. The first test should target your baseline and it should be done before you start the medication. Then get it checked after you’ve taken the drug for a few months to see the change. There are about six main types of osteoporosis medicine which we want to discuss their merits and in the merits. However for the purpose of this article, we are going to discuss only one (bisphosphonates) and the remaining in the next article. We want to therefore invite you to keep on the link for more information about osteoporosis medications.
Identifying the Right Osteoporosis Medication: Bisphosphonates, Fosamax, Actonel, Boniva, Zoledronic Acid (Reclast or Zometa)
Bisphosphonates are the backbones family of osteoporosis medicines today. They’re the workhorses of osteoporosis treatment. They are often the favorite because they offer a number of options for patients under treatment. However Fosamax was the first FDA-approved osteoporosis medicine just a decade ago and consequently the approval of followed by Actonel three years later. Boniva and Reclast are the most recent FDA approvals.
All these drugs have been shown to increase bone density and Fosamax and Actonel lower the risk of spine and hips fractures. Actonel has been shown to work quickly, reducing fracture risk within the first six months. Boniva has not yet been shown to reduce hip fractures, and that’s a concern. On the other hand, Reclast or Zometa increases bone mineral density. Besides this its effectiveness in reducing spine and hip fractures with the reduced spine fracture risk sustained over three years has been confirmed. According to the manufacturer, Reclast also reduces fractures of the wrist, arm, leg, and rib. Reclast has been shown to reduce mortality in people who have already had hip fractures.
The good thing about osteoporosis medication is that of flexibility. Upon consultation with your doctor, you can settle for taking the medication daily, weekly, monthly or get a once-a-year intravenous (IV) treatment in your doctor’s office. The choice is yours and below is a simple guideline for you:
- Fosamax can be taken daily or weekly in pill form.
- Liquid Fosamax can be taken weekly.
- Actonel can be taken daily, weekly, or monthly.
- Boniva can be taken once a day or monthly in pill form.
- An intravenous (IV) form of Boniva can be given once yearly.
- Reclast or Zometa is a once-yearly IV infusion treatment.
An IV infusion involves a needle in your arm and a drip bag just like you get in a hospital. While it may sound like a slightly extreme way to get a medication, it has its advantages. The IV drug goes directly to the bone, bypassing the GI tract entirely.
If you are worried of time it may take because of your busy schedule then you need not to be worried because the procedure is friendly and timely. To be precise the whole process would take about five minutes for Boniva and 15 minutes for Reclast and you’re done for the year. In a record of 15minutes you are done meaning that this is very ideal even to those people who may be concerned about time.
When dealing with osteoporosis, it is not just about identifying the right osteoporosis medication but it also put the patient to task on the usage of such medications. Taking osteoporosis medicine in pill form for instance is serious business. You don’t just pop the pill and swallow. The patient must follow specific guidelines which may include:
- Taking the drugs first thing in the morning and on an empty stomach.
- You cannot sit or lie down after taking it.
- You cannot eat or drink anything before or after the medication.
- You must starve yourself for sometimes like 30 to 60 minutes to allow for the absorption of the medicine into the body.
- When that time period is over, you can take other medications.
The longer the starvation, the better chances that the osteoporosis medicine will be absorbed. Your stomach has to be empty. You have to make sure there is no competition in the GI tract for the drug. You can take other medications later that morning but not before taking the osteoporosis medicine. This intense regimen is important because very little of the drug is actually absorbed by the body. The body absorbs only about 1% of the drug so you have to make sure you get the most from every dose.
When deciding about bisphosphonates, ask yourself these eight questions:
- How frequently do you want to take an osteoporosis medicine?
- Will you really remember to take it?
- Will you follow the morning regimen for taking the pills?
- Are you taking other medications regularly?
- Do you have any GI problems?
- Do you have difficulty swallowing?
- Would you rather have a once-yearly treatment?
Doctor Dalal Akoury advices that pill-form bisphosphonates are not ideal for people with GI problems like gastritis or ulcers or individuals with serious esophageal problems like stricture. She emphasizes health facilities AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center are in business of ensuring that patients absorb the drug. But if anyone has the conditions described above, they such may opt for an IV. Finally treatment is just the last resort. The best option would have been prevention. This is an area where doctor Akoury specializes on and you can schedule for an appointment with her for professional advice on the preventive approach today.