Osteoporosis medication may reduce bone loss in breast cancer patients

Alan Wu

October 11, 2011

Osteoporosis medication may reduce bone loss in breast cancer patientsBreast cancer treatments can have serious side-effects on a person's body, and one of the most harmful effects in senior women is bone loss.

Most anti-cancer medications in postmenopausal women work to reduce the production of estrogen as a way to curb the growth of breast cancer cells. However, this also makes them more susceptible to bone loss, which could increase their risks of falling.

Researchers wanted to see if using a safe osteoporosis-prevention medication could also help reduce the amount of bone loss a cancer patient had. They followed 602 postmenopausal women for five years who were in the early stages of breast cancer during the initial meeting. The participants were broken into a control group who received a placebo and an experimental group that got the bone loss preventive medication, though both treatments were administered only after bone loss was detected or a fracture occurred.

After five years, researchers found that those in the experimental group experienced significantly less bone loss than those in the control group.

Caregivers who are worried that their loved one may fall due to bone loss may want to install a senior alert system into their home. This way, they can call for help in an instant if they fall. 

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