Role of zoledronic acid in the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis

Clin Interv Aging. 2011;6:89-99. doi: 10.2147/CIA.S7282. Epub 2011 Mar 28.


Taken once a year, intravenous zoledronic acid (Zol) (Reclast® or Aclasta®) is a third-generation nitrogen-containing bisphosphonate that is effective compared with placebo in reducing the risk of fractures in patients with postmenopausal osteoporosis and recent low-trauma hip fracture. In glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis, there is no significant difference between Zol and risedronate for new fractures. Improvements in bone mineral density and early reduction of bone remodeling markers are observed in postmenopausal osteoporosis, recent low-trauma hip fracture, and glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis. Given that Zol is generally well tolerated and very convenient, it is an interesting therapeutic option for aging patients who take multiple oral drugs, who have adherence or gastrointestinal tolerance issues, and who have an indication for oral bisphosphonates. Zol is not recommended for patients with severe renal impairment. Vitamin D deficiency should be corrected before the administration of Zol.

Keywords: elderly; osteoporosis; zoledronic acid.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Aging / pathology
  • Bone Density / drug effects
  • Bone Density Conservation Agents / adverse effects
  • Bone Density Conservation Agents / pharmacology*
  • Bone Density Conservation Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Diphosphonates / adverse effects
  • Diphosphonates / pharmacology*
  • Diphosphonates / therapeutic use*
  • Fractures, Bone / prevention & control
  • Humans
  • Imidazoles / adverse effects
  • Imidazoles / pharmacology*
  • Imidazoles / therapeutic use*
  • Injections, Intravenous
  • Osteoporosis / drug therapy*
  • Osteoporosis, Postmenopausal / drug therapy
  • Risk Factors
  • Sex Factors
  • Zoledronic Acid


  • Bone Density Conservation Agents
  • Diphosphonates
  • Imidazoles
  • Zoledronic Acid