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Re: osteopenia in young women

Re: osteopenia in young women

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Posted by Laurie C. on August 26, 2000 at 21:49:27:

In Reply to: Re: osteopenia in young women posted by Laurie C. on August 26, 2000 at 15:00:27:

: : My 21 yr old athlete daughter was diagnosed with osteopenia of the spine. Her GYN prescribed Actonel plus calcium supplements. After doing internet research I concluded that it was unwise for my child to take this drug at such a young age! (possibility of birth defects in the future) Does anyone know anything about this topiC? I would appreciate some comments!

: Dear Brumblay,

: I am sorry your daughter must endure this at such a young age. I am told I have osteopenia and; although not in my 20's, I am still of childbearing age. I'm engaged and hope to get pregnant so I do have comments on this topic especially since my doctor gave me actonel. I read the PDR very carefully. No studies; of course, on pregnancy in humans on this drug has been done. The animal studies show that ther is incomplete ossification of the skull and sternebrae in the fetus' of rats treated at a dose of actonel which is 5 and 27 times the dose prescribed for humans. However; in rats given a dose which whould be equivalent to a normal human dose, periparturient hpocalcemia and mortality of the pregnant females allowed to deliver was noted. Obviously, if you want to get pregnant you must go off the drug. From this little bit of data it seems (note I say seems) fairly safe to assume a low likelihood of fetal abnormalities at the normal human dose. (How far can you deduce from rats to humans?) Same type of stats with fosamax. Ask your doctor about calcitonin. Have you also considered alternative methods? Some evidence that horsetail may be a helpful herbal treatment. (Helpful and effective are two vastly different things, I know)

One more comment from me. I've been unable to get the tragedy of a 21 year old with this out of my mind and a question occurs to me which may be stupid and raise false hopes, ...but here goes. If peak bone density is not reached until the age of 25 then wouldn't anyone under 25 have low bone mineral density ("osteopenia")? Anyway if my line of reasoning is correct; which I'm not sure it is, but- wouldn't that mean that actonel is pretty radical and that approaches that focus on helping one reach one's peak mineral density by the age of 25 should be the focus. Therefore; nutrition and vitamins and minerals that aid the maximum absorption of calcium for bone rebuilding should be a viable approach. Bill Walton, an athlete (basketball) suffered osteoporosis due to a magnesium deficiency which when corrected reversed the condition. No need for actonel! Vitamin K is also very important. We tend to just hear about D, yet a balance of minerals is the key. Heres a resource: "Preventing and Reversing Osteoporosis" by Alan R. Gaby MD, @ 1994 (Prima Publishing, Rocklin Ca.)
Also consulting a nutrition oriented practitioner may help. There are homeopathic remedies as well if you'r open to that. Calcarea carbonica and calcarea flourica tinct. are two. Hope these thoughts are useful and helpful.

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