Summary Box: Osteoporosis drugs

AP News
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Posted: Sep 09, 2011 6:34 PM
Summary Box: Osteoporosis drugs

GUIDANCE NEEDED: Government advisers recommend that makers of osteoporosis drugs clarify how long patients should take them to strengthen bones yet limit risk of complications.

THE WORRY: While Fosamax and similar drugs prevent common, debilitating hip and spine fractures, there are rare cases of patients suffering jawbone destruction, unusual thighbone fractures and cancer of the esophagus.

FINAL SAY: With evidence varying by drug and the level of risk sometimes unclear, the advisers left the actual wording changes up to the Food and Drug Administration.