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Osteoporosis Drug Found To Improve Arthritis Too!

 

The knee joint is commonly the site of pain caused by arthritic inflammation.: image via arthritislegpain.usThe knee joint is commonly the site of pain caused by arthritic inflammation.: image via arthritislegpain.us Arthritis is a joint disease that results in a progressive loss of cartilage, just as osteoporosis results in progressive loss of bone.  Though osteoporosis drugs are intended to regenerate bone growth, to date, arthritis drugs can only reduce inflammation and, thereby, reduce pain.  But observation of patients taking a certain osteoporosis drug, by researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC), led to the recent finding that this drug not only restored bone but cartilage as well.

Osteoporosis and osteoarthritis (OA) are both diseases of aging, so it is not surprising, especially since arthritis is very common among those who have ever injured a joint, had poor posture or gait, or carried too much weight on their joints, to find osteoporosis patients who also suffer from arthritis.

Observing OA patients who were taking the drug Forteo for osteoporosis, researchers in the Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation, Center for Musculoskeletal Research at URMC noticed that their arthritis was improving along with their osteoporosis symptoms.  Consequently, the team began to experiment using Forteo daily for one month to lab mice models of post-traumatic knee OA.  They demonstrated in several studies that cell production was enhanced, degeneration of cartilage was depressed, and injured cartilage became as much as 32 percent thicker after 30 days of Forteo administration.  

Researchers also used cases from government data bases to find human patients on Forteo medication for osteoporosis who also been diagnosed with knee arthritis.  Though only 14 in 4000 people were found within the parameters, this group did report less pain and a higher ability to function than a matched population of patients who were not taking the drug Forteo. 

Considerably more research needs to be done before Forteo is prescribed for OA.  In addition to posing a risk for bone cancer, the drug has other potentially serious side effects.  For this reason, Forteo is prescribed for a maximum of two years, and only when no other drug has been successful. As yet, there is no available data on how well Forteo protects cartilage after treatment has been withdrawn.

sources: Medical XpressCenter for Disease Control and Prevention Arthritis Today

SEE ALSO: 10 Cool Gadgets For Those With Arthritis and Hand Pain

Comments
Sep 22, 2011
by Anonymous

Arthritis for pain

My symptoms were very sudden - have always been very healthy, then woke one day with incredibly painful shoulder (about 3.5 months ago) that lasted about 2 days. Thought I had overexerted myself gardening! Then a week later I woke with really painful, swollen knee which lasted a couple of days! A week after that it was my wrist. Then the following week each day was a different joint moving from hands, wrists to jaw! Went to the doctor who immediately did a blood test. Came back positive for anti DsDNA (specific for lupus) but negative on RF. Referred me to a rheumatologist who said my symptoms sounded more like RA and tested me for anti CCP - that came back positive! So I have an overlap of the 2 diseases! First couple of weeks, on anti-inflammatory and hydroxychloroquine there wasn't much relief but after anti-CCP came back positive methotrexate was added. Now on 17.5mg a week and have to say that last week I was even wondering if they were wrong as it all seemed too easy! However today I do have painful feet just to remind me they weren't wrong! It does seem to have been easy as doctors have all been great and I've been lucky all meds have agreed with me and methotrexate reduced symptoms quickly!

Findyourdrug Websearch

Oct 8, 2011
by Anonymous

Osteoporosis disease

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Alicia Kirk
Medical-rights.com