Prevention and treatment of nonpostmenopausal osteoporosis

Am J Health Syst Pharm. 2004 Dec 15;61(24):2637-54; quiz 2655-6.


Purpose: The causes, prevention, and treatment of osteoporosis in specific populations are discussed.

Summary: Osteoporosis and osteopenia affect 44 million women and men ages 50 years or older. Fractures are the most devastating consequence of this disease and significantly affect quality of life, activities of daily living, survival, and health care costs. Most osteoporosis research has focused on postmenopausal women, but several other populations are at risk for osteoporosis, such as patients taking certain medications that affect bone health and those with various health conditions that cause bone loss, including anorexia nervosa, hyperthyroidism, organ transplantation, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and inflammatory bowel disease. Glucocorticoids are the most common secondary cause of osteoporosis. Other medications that have been implicated as secondary causes include anticonvulsants, heparin, warfarin, and methotrexate. Preventing osteoporosis may be even more important in adolescence than after menopause.

Conclusion: Osteoporosis needs to be recognized, monitored, and appropriately treated in patients taking medications that affect bone health and in patients with conditions that increase the risk of osteoporosis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Education, Pharmacy, Continuing / methods
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteoporosis / prevention & control*
  • Osteoporosis / therapy*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • United States / epidemiology