Bisphosphonates are widely used in the treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis. They decrease the rate of bone turnover, maintain or improve structural and material properties of bone, and increase bone mineral density and thereby decrease the risk of fractures. Available potent bisphosphonates can be given to patients by different dosing regimens that range from daily oral administration to yearly intravenous infusions. Controlled studies, extending to 10 years of continuous treatment, provide information about long-term efficacy and safety and can help in the planning of long-term treatment strategies. Selection of bisphosphonates for the treatment of individuals should be based on a careful review of efficacy data, a risk profile of the bisphosphonate, and values and preferences of the patient.
© 2010 New York Academy of Sciences.