News & Resources

June 1, 2012. Category: Unsafe Drugs

Report Warns that Popular Osteoporosis Drugs have Dangerous Side Affects

The FDA released a report raising new safety concerns about potential serious side effects caused by a class of osteoporosis drugs called bisphosphonates.  This class of bone-building drugs includes brand name medications Fosamax, Actonel, Boniva, Didronel, Aredia, Reclast and Skelid.    In the findings reported in The New England Journal of Medicine in May of 2012, the FDA indicated that due to the seriousness of the potential side effects (including subtrochanteric hip fractures and jaw bone death), younger patients should limit their use of biphosphonate drugs to five years.    

This is not the first time the safety of bisphosphonates drugs has been called into question.  The FDA issued multiple ongoing safety reports on the drugs in 2007, and followed up in 2008 and twice in 2010 (March 2010 and October 2010).   In 2011, ABS News reported about the FDA's concerns that taking the drugs long-term may actually make bones weaker and increase the risk of rare but serious side effects such as atypical fractures of the thigh bone, esophageal cancer and osteonecrosis of the jaw, a rare but painful condition in which the jaw bone crumbles.

Overall, the studies suggest a very concerning safety uncertainty about the optimal length of time a patient should take these drugs.  Despite this safety issue, popular biphosphonate drugs such as Fosamax remain on the market.  If you have suffered from these side effects after taking one of these drugs, its important you stand up for yourself.  Please contact the experienced Tampa personal injury attorneys at Alley, Clark & Greiwe.

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