Oral Steroid Users in U.S. Not Receiving Supplementary Therapy From a Drug Such as Fosamax in Order to Prevent Bone Loss

July 31, 2012 (PRLEAP.COM) Business News
(New York, NY, July 31, 2012) The Rottenstein Law Group, which represents clients with claims stemming from the severe side effects of the osteoporosis drug Fosamax, has learned of research suggesting that many Americans who take oral steroids are not taking additional steps to reduce the side effects of those drugs even if one of those steps is taking a controversial drug like Fosamax.

According to a Reuters report, national survey research conducted over the past ten years has revealed that many Americans who take oral steroids to treat inflammatory conditions like arthritis or immune system disorders do not receive additional therapy to minimize the risk of side effects, which can include bone loss. More than 2.5 million adults in the United States take oral steroids, but "the longer you use steroids, and the greater amount of steroids, the greater your risk of fracture," said Robert Overman, a research coordinator at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation in Ohio, who worked on the study.

More than a quarter of those who take steroids took the drugs for at least five years, according to the study data. Fewer than one in 10, however, were also taking bisphosphonates, which are recommended for most people on steroids to prevent bone thinning or osteoporosis. "According to osteoporosis expert Dr. Ethel S. Siris, guidelines call for people to have a bone density test before they are put on steroids. That way, bisphosphonates can be prescribed if appropriate."

There are various ways to treat osteoporosis, including diet and lifestyle modifications, and hormone treatments for women. But bisphosphonates such as Merck's Fosamax, Roche's Boniva, Novartis's Reclast, and Warner Chilcott's Actonel are the most popular option, due in part to the drugs being relatively inexpensive. Conversely, the dangers of bisphosphonates are rapidly becoming well known. Since 2000, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has known about a tendency of Fosamax to cause osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ). More recently, research has linked Fosamax use to sudden, unusual bone fractures, particularly of the femur.

The Rottenstein Law Group urges anyone with a friend or relative who has been prescribed Fosamax or another osteoporosis drug to reach out to that person and recommend that he or she consult a physician immediately and then speak to a qualified personal injury lawyer. The Rottenstein Law Group maintains a Fosamax Lawsuit Help Center at www.fosamaxclassactionlawsuit.com. There, those who have suffered alleged injuries from Fosamax can find valuable information about their legal rights that will help determine the proper course of action. The site also has features that allow for easy sharing, including links for automatic posting on Facebook and Twitter, specifically to enable visitors to spread the word about the dangers of Fosamax. (Attorney advertising. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.)

About The Rottenstein Law Group
The Rottenstein Law Group is a New York-based law firm that represents clients nationwide in mass tort actions. The firm was founded by Rochelle Rottenstein, who has more than two decades of experience as a lawyer, to represent clients in consumer product injury, mass tort, and class action lawsuits in a compassionate manner.