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Reducing osteoporosis-associated fractures in men

Alendronate increases bone mineral density in men, which could reduce the number of fractures and the need for surgery.

September 1, 2000

NEW YORK, Aug 31 (Praxis Press). Although osteoporosis is less common in men than in women, 25% to 30% of all hip fractures occur in men. In a two-year double-blind trial, Orwoll and colleagues studied the effect of 10 mg of alendronate or placebo, given daily, on bone mineral density in 241 men (age 31 to 87 years) with osteoporosis. All received calcium and vitamin D supplements. The researchers then measured percent changes in lumbar spine, hip, and total-body mineral density. They found that men who received alendronate had a mean increase in bone mineral density of 7.1% ± 0.3% at the lumbar spine, 2.5% ± 0.4% at the femoral neck, and 2.0% ± 0.2% for the total body. In contrast, men who received placebo had an increase in lumbar spine bone mineral density of 1.8% ± 0.5% and no significant changes in femoral-neck or total body bone mineral density. The increase in bone mineral density in the alendronate group was greater than that in the placebo group at all measurement sites. They also found that the incidence of vertebral fractures was lower in the alendronate group than in the placebo group. Men in the placebo group had a 2.4mm decrease in height, as compared with a decrease of 0.6mm in the alendronate group. In men with osteoporosis, alendronate is generally well tolerated and significantly increases spine, hip, and total-body bone mineral density.

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