Dr-K-Saag_picDr. Ken Saag

Do You Have Vertebral (Spine), Compression Fractures, or Proximal
Hip Fractures due to Osteoporosis?

If so, you may qualify for a research study of an investigational
medication being conducted at UAB.

To Quality You Must:

   Have Vertebral Fractures or Proximal Hip Fractures due to Osteoporosis
   Be age 55 - 90
   Not be currently on medication for Osteoporosis 
   Meet other criteria

Participants May Receive:    

   Study required procedures
   Study Drug, Calcium and Vitamin D supplements
   Compensation for travel and parking at no cost 

To learn more, please call Stephanie Biggers, RN at (205)-934-1444 

What Is Osteoporosis? Osteoporosis is a bone disease  which bones are brittle and more likely to break.  It is most common in women after menopause but it may also develop in men. Fractures caused by osteoporosis may significantly affect quality of life.

What Causes Osteoporosis? Osteoporosis results from a loss of bone mass (measured as bone density) and from a change in bone structure. Many factors will raise your risk of developing osteoporosis and breaking a bone. You can change some of these risk factors, but not others. Recognizing your risk factors is important so you can take steps to prevent this condition or treat it before it becomes worse.

Major Risk Factors That You Cannot Change Include:

  • Older age (starting in the mid-30s but more likely with advancing age)
  • Non-Hispanic white or Asian ethnic background
  • Small bone structure
  • Family history of osteoporosis or an osteoporosis-related fracture in a parent or sibling
  • Prior fracture due to a low-level injury, particularly after age 50


Risk Factors That You May Be Able to Change Include:
  • Low levels of sex hormone, mainly estrogen in women (e.g., menopause)
  • The eating disorders anorexia nervosa and bulimia
  • Cigarette smoking
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Low calcium and vitamin D, from low intake in your diet or inadequate absorption in your gut
  • Sedentary (inactive) lifestyle or immobility
  • Certain medications, including the following:
    • glucocorticoid medications (also called corticosteroids)
    • excess thyroid hormone replacement in those taking medications for low thyroid or hypothyroidism
    • heparin, a commonly-used blood thinner
    • some treatments that deplete sex hormones, such as anastrozole (Arimidex) and letrozole (Femara) to treat breast cancer or leuprorelin (Lupron) to treat prostate cancer and other health problems

 Diseases That Can Affect Bones

  • Endocrine (hormone) diseases (hyperthyroidism, hyperparathyroidism, Cushing's disease, etc.)
  • Inflammatory arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis

 Who Gets Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is more common in older women, mainly non-Hispanic white and Asian women. Yet it can occur at any age, in men as well as women, and in all ethnic groups. People over age 50 are at greatest risk of developing osteoporosis and having related fractures. Over age 50, one in two women and one in six men will suffer an osteoporosis-related fracture at some point in their lives.

How is Osteoporosis Diagnosed?

You can learn if you have osteoporosis by having a simple test that measures bone mineral density—sometimes called BMD. BMD —the amount of bone you have in a given area—is measured at different parts of your body. Dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (referred to as DXA or DEXA and pronounced "dex-uh") is the best current test to measure BMD.

How is Osteoporosis Treated?

 If you have osteoporosis, your health care provider will advise the following:

  • Calcium. Make sure you are getting enough calcium in your diet or you might need to consider taking supplements. The National Osteoporosis Foundation recommends 1,000 milligrams (shortened as mg) per day for most adults and 1,200 mg per day for women over age 50 or men over age 70.
  • Vitamin D. Get adequate amounts of vitamin D, which is important to help your body absorb calcium from foods you eat. The recommended daily dose is 400–800 International Units (called IU) for adults younger than age 50, and 800–1,000 IU for those age 50 and older. (These are the current guidelines from the National Osteoporosis Foundation.) You may need a different dose depending on your blood level of vitamin D.
  • Physical activity. Get exercise most days, especially weight-bearing exercise, such as walking. Some people also will need medication. A number of medications are available for the prevention and/or treatment ("management") of osteoporosis.

There are other drugs/medications available for the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis such as bisphonates, calcitonin, estrogen or hormonal replacement therapy(in women). Young women who have risk factors for osteoporosis and fractures need to carefully consider their medication options if they are planning a pregnancy. None of the drugs for managing osteoporosis has enough safety data available to recommend using them in women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Note: Always speak to/consult your Rheumatologist for best treatment options.

Source: http://www.rheumatology.org/Practice/Clinical/Patients/Diseases_And_Conditions/Osteoporosis/