Drugs increase fracture risk

Posted on Feb 23, 2009 in Health & Wellness

Some drugs double women’s risk of fracture.The question: Are people taking common diabetes drugs more likely to break a bone?

This study: analyzed data from 10 studies, involving 13,715 diabetics who had been randomly assigned to take either a placebo or doses of Avandia (rosiglitazone) or Actos (pioglitazone), thiazolidinedione drugs that improve the body’s use of insulin. After a range of one to four years, 371 people had reported a broken bone. Women who were taking one of the drugs were more than twice as likely to have broken a bone than those who were not, while men experienced essentially no increased risk from taking the drugs.

Who may be affected? People taking thiazolidinediones, which have proven effective in countering insulin resistance but which also have been shown to increase the risk of heart attacks and chest pain in diabetics.

Caveats: The study did not determine whether the risk varied between the two drugs or if certain bones were more likely to break than others.

Find this study: Dec. 9 online issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal. Learn more about treating diabetes at www.diabetes.niddk.nih.gov