Impact of osteoporosis and its treatment on oral health

Am J Med Sci. 2013 Nov;346(5):396-401. doi: 10.1097/MAJ.0b013e31828983da.


Osteoporosis has emerged as a major health problem affecting middle-aged and older individuals. It is characterized by a reduced bone mass and strength, resulting in increased susceptibility to fractures. The disease is associated with several risk factors, and increasing evidence suggests that it may be associated with oral health conditions such as periodontal disease, reduced jaw bone density and tooth loss. Besides the effects of osteoporosis on oral health, bisphosphonate-related osteonecrosis of the jaws is a major concern to the dentist. Bisphosphonate-related osteonecrosis of the jaws is a recently described adverse effect of bisphosphonate therapy. The exact mechanisms by which these drugs cause necrosis of the jaws remain unclear, and a true cause-and-effect relationship between osteonecrosis of the jaw and bisphosphonate use has not yet been established. Hence, any form of invasive dentoalveolar treatment should be performed with caution in patients taking bisphosphonates. This review discusses current evidence on osteoporosis and its treatment implications as a risk factor in the development of various oral diseases.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bisphosphonate-Associated Osteonecrosis of the Jaw / epidemiology
  • Bisphosphonate-Associated Osteonecrosis of the Jaw / etiology
  • Diphosphonates / adverse effects*
  • Diphosphonates / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Oral Health*
  • Osteoporosis / complications*
  • Osteoporosis / drug therapy*
  • Periodontal Diseases / epidemiology
  • Risk Factors
  • Tooth Loss / epidemiology


  • Diphosphonates