There’s now a better pill for brittle bones.

A strontium-containing anti-osteoporosis drug was found to effectively lessen risks of bone factures in postmenopausal osteoporotics after a three-year study.

According to the New England Journal of Medicine, strontium ranelate, an orally administered drug, reduces risks of vertebral fractures and increases bone mineral density by increasing bone formation and lowering bone resorption or gradual bone loss.

The study randomly assigned 1,649 postmenopausal women and assessed the efficacy of 2 mg of strontium ranelate taken per day. The women were also given regular doses of calcium and vitamin D supplements to facilitate calcium absorption. Almost half of the participants experienced reduced vertebral fracture risk. In three years, their bone mineral density increased by 14.4 per cent at the lumbar (lower back) spine and 8.3 per cent at the femoral neck (thigh).

Dr. Julie Yu, a rheumatologist at the University of Santo Tomas Hospital Joint and Bone Center, told the Varsitarian that the new drug adds to the growing number of new treatments for osteoporosis.

The three locally available drugs are, Fosamax (Alendronate Sodium), Evista (Raloxifene HCl) and Actonel (Risecdronate sodium).

However, Dr. Yu still recommends a healthy lifestyle for the fight against the disease.

“The best way to prevent osteoporosis is still lifestyle modification like avoiding cigarettes, drinking milk instead of carbonated drinks, and taking calcium and Vitamin D supplements,” she said. Jefferson O. Evalarosa

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