Osteoporosis: Don't wait to break a bone!

Today, I saw a patient who had a hard fall and did not break any bones. She had been on over a decade of Fosomax by another physician for osteoporosis. She broke her ankle just walking. When she switched her care to me, I put her on injectible Prolia. It's been three years and today her bone density is near normal, and she had a hard fall and avoided a break. People who break their hips are at high risk of death. We, as physicians, need to do more to educate the public about the importance of osteoporosis and to evaluate and treat the condition to avoid hospitalization and death. If 1- you've had a broken bone, 2- your mom had osteoporosis, 3- you are getting shorter, 4- you are a post-menopausal woman 5- you are a man with low testosterone, 6- you've been on steroids, 7- you are thin, 8- you've taken anti-acids for a long time, PLEASE GET YOUR BONE DENSITY CHECKED VIA DEXA SCAN. If you are diagnosed with OSTEOPOROSIS, 1- exercise 2- take Calcium/ Vitamin D 3- consider Prolia- an injection given every 6 months. If you have severe osteoporosis, you may need Forteo- a daily injection. Don't waste time with oral medications like Fosomax, Boniva, Actonel. They don't build bones. I urge you to consider injectibles that are safe and easy to use.

Afshine Ash Emrani, MD, FACC Internal Medicine, Cardiology

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