Objective: The aim of this study was to assess the effects of nasal salmon calcitonin (SCT) administration on bone turnover in ovariectomized women.
Methods: Patients who had undergone bilateral ovariectomy 7 days previously, received either calcium supplementation (1000 mg/day, together with nasal SCT (100 IU/day) (n = 19) or the same calcium supplementation together with a placebo intranasal spray daily (n = 19), for 2 years.
Results: In the calcium-only-treated subjects, lumbar bone mineral density (BMD) was found to have decreased significantly (P < 0.001), 6 months after surgery and remained at this level until the end of the study. In the SCT-treated group, BMD remained stable during the 1st year and then decreased gradually, reaching a statistically significant level in the 2nd year. Mean serum osteocalcin concentration was unchanged during the 1st year of SCT treatment but was significantly elevated during the 2nd year (P < 0.01). The observed rise in serum osteocalcin concentration and urinary hydroxyproline excretion during the 2nd year of treatment with SCT was accompanied by a significant rise in serum calcitonin levels (P < 0.001 after 18 months and P < 0.01 after 24 months).
Conclusion: This study shows that continuous treatment with intranasal SCT is able to prevent the bone loss that follows ovariectomy.