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Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Prolia - New Bone Loss Treatment

Not too long ago, I read that the FDA approved a new medication for bone loss treatment caused by Osteoporosis. The drug is called Prolia (Denosumab) and it is said to be the first biologically derived agent to treat bone loss caused by this disease.

Unlike the commonly taken meds for osteoporosis which are taken once a month and come in pill form like alendronate (Fosamax), ibandronate (Boniva), risedronate (Actonel) and zolendronic acid (Reclast), Prolia is administered by an injection under the skin in the doctor's office, once every six months.

Prolia works about the same as some of the other medications for osteoporosis; it prevents the breakdown of bone by cells called osteoclasts, but unlike all the other bone loss drugs, which hasten cell death after they are ingested, Prolia restricts a protein called RANKL which is important for the the production, function and survival of osteoclasts. Prolia also clears the body more quickly then some of the other bone loss drugs.

Like most medications, Prolia can have side effects. Some of them which have been reported are: pain in the back, arms and legs, muscle and bone pain, high cholesterol levels and urinary tract infections, low blood calcium, skin reactions including cellulitis, rashes and eczema. More serious infections requiring hospitalization have occurred, but were extremely rare.

Prolia may be a good alternative for those who don't tolerate all the other bone loss medication very well or not at all. It is certainly worth asking your doctor about!

Proverbs 3:7-8
7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the LORD and depart from evil. 8 It will be health to your flesh, And strength to your bones.


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