About this resource:
Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
Last Reviewed: 2020
Studies show certain medicines can lower the risk of bone fractures for people with osteoporosis in the short-term. In this systematic review, researchers looked at how well long-term osteoporosis drug treatment (ODT) works to lower the risk of bone fractures. They also looked at the effects of ODT discontinuation and holidays (a period of not taking ODT for 1 year after taking it for at least 1 year before then). Researchers found that while long-term ODTs can lower the risk of bone fractures for some people, they may also have serious side effects. There was limited evidence about the effects of ODT holidays.
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Fink HA, MacDonald R, Forte ML, Rosebush CE, Ensrud KE, Schousboe JT, Nelson VA, Ullman K, Butler M, Olson CM, Taylor BC, Brasure M, Wilt TJ. (2019). Long-Term Drug Therapy and Drug Holidays for Osteoporosis Fracture Prevention: A Systematic Review. Retrieved from https://effectivehealthcare.ahrq.gov/products/osteoporosis-fracture-prevention/research.