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Osteoporosis

Alternative Options to Medication

06/29/2004

Question:

My doctor has gotten my results from my bone density test and tells me that I am in early stages of osteoporosis and wants me to start to take a medication called Actonel 35 mg, once a week. I do not like to take medications and I am wondering if there was anything else I can do instead of taking this to prevent my bones from getting worse? I also take hormones, premarine .625mg once a day because of a total hysterectomy I had 10 years ago....I am 47 years old.... Thank you

Answer:

It would be important to know if the report indicated osteoporosis or simply osteopenia. Osteopenia is in between normal and osteoporosis.  Some people call osteopenia "early osteoporosis", but it is not the same as being actually in the osteoporosis range.  I would be less concerned if it was osteopenia. Adequate calcium, vitamin D, exercise, and not smoking are important elements for maintaining bone health. If you choose not to take prescription treatment and are in the actual osteoporosis range, I would recommend rechecking your bone density in one year.

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Response by:

Margery   Gass, MD Margery Gass, MD
Formely, Professor, Clinical Obstetrics & Gynecology
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati