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Fracture Risk, Bone Cells and
Two Different Approaches
motivates people to seek strong bones. When approaching the Western medical system seeking this
better bone health, they discover that the standard medical approach is to prescribe drugs
that affect bone cells directly.
Actually, if your bone mineral density test score
is low, the standard of practice requires licensed health
professionals with 'prescriptive powers' (those whose licenses give them the legal right
to write prescriptions) to order certain drugs.
The standard of practice formula works like this:
'If A exists, then B is required." In other words, if (A): bone mineral density tests are below minus
2.0... then (B): prescribing a particular drug is required.
If they fail to do so, the legal enforcement mechanisms
of the standard put them under threat of losing their license to practice, as well as facing that of being
successfully sued because they failed to adhere to the 'standard of
That means, in the case of bones, since the standard is
a bisphosphonate prescription, patients who have a bone mineral density test result at minus 2.0 or
greater, will be given a bisphosphonate such as Fosamex or one of the newer generation from the same
chemical class such as Alendronate, Aclasta, Actonel, Aredia, Bondronat, Boniva, Didronel, Fosavance,
Reclast, Skelid, and Zometa.
Bisphonsphonates are the class of chemical used in
scouring powder to clean the skin cell scum off the bathtub ring. They have long been used in various
industries - among them the fertilizer, textile and oil industries since the 19th century to prevent
corrosion. The fact that they dissolve human skin cells is why the pill when taken orally can burn a
hole in the esophagus or stomach.
Governmental approval for bisphosphonates was based
on studies that demonstrated 'decreased spinal fractures'. The fractures that the studies investigated
to make this case were the tiny, hairline microfractures of spinal bones that are normal in everyone and do
not cause problems. They did not investigate the fractures of the thigh bone (femur) that are so
This class of drugs is said to
be effective because of better bone density score test results. While it is true that bone
density test results generally improve for those taking these drugs, the bones also become softer
rather than stronger - something that bone mineral density tests do not measure. Some practitioners
question the accuracy of using these higher scores to prove better bone health because the same result
could be obtained by consuming anything that makes bones show up as more dense - say, by swallowing lead
Bisphosphonates have a half life of 15
years, meaning it takes the body 15 years to eliminate half of them. Now that
people have ingested them for a number of years, their side effects are becoming more well known.
Among these are
- necrosis of the jaw bone (jaw bone
- bone fractures and
- increased incidence of atrial fibrillation in women
(which can lead to strokes.)
Nonetheless, this class of drugs is expected to remain
the leading drug class, the only changes as of this writing are expected to be a move to weekly oral dosing and/ or
quarterly or yearly intravenous dosing.
Such approaches fail to take in to account that bones are
in bodies, and that the state of affairs in the body in which the bones reside has everything to do with what's
going on with the bones themselves.
A different approach to improving bone health involves
addressing bone nutrition and the nutritional and movement needs of the entire body in which the bones are
residing. For example, since bones can release their mineral treasures in less than a nanosecond in order to
rebalance blood pH, a primary method for protecting bones involves pH rebalancing using either dietary changes or
supplements or both.
Although there are no specific, large scale scientific
studies to demonstrate the effectiveness of an approach that provides bone nutrition, nonetheless it is
one that's being embraced more and more. Both practitioners and their patients are increasingly concerned
about bone health, the negative consequences of synthetic, chemical drugs in general, and bisphosphonates in
Happily, it is also an approach being
demonstrated, a person at a time, to be effective, not only for better bone health, but also one that
provides increased vitality and greater wellbeing at the same time.
Pamela Levin, R.N.
June 20, 2011
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Tags: fracture risk bisphosphonates biphosphonates iv bisphosphonates bisphosphonates osteoporosis femur fracture alendronate side effects strong bone bone nutrition healthy bone alendronate