Advances in osteoporosis therapy. 2003 update of practical guidelines.
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OBJECTIVE: To review evidence for current therapies for postmenopausal osteoporosis and to establish practical guidelines for management of osteoporosis by family physicians. QUALITY OF EVIDENCE: MEDLINE was searched from January 1990 to January 2003. Articles retrieved were graded by level of evidence (I to III). Recommendations for diagnosis and therapy were based on evidence from randomized controlled trials and meta-analyses. MAIN MESSAGE: Osteoporosis is treatable. Early diagnosis and intervention is recommended. After excluding secondary causes of osteoporosis, physicians should advise patients to take appropriate calcium and vitamin D supplementation. Those with osteopenia at risk of fractures and those with established osteoporosis need additional therapy. CONCLUSION: Approved pharmacologic therapies include alendronate, risedronate, raloxifene, calcitonin, cyclical etidronate, and hormone replacement therapy. Family physicians can help with early diagnosis and intervention and should discuss lifestyle modification with patients.
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