Changes of the quality-of-life under the treatment of severe senile osteoporosis with teriparatide

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Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2008 Jun 12. [Epub ahead of print] Maugeri D, Russo E, Luca S, Carmelo L, Mamazza G, Sorace R, Rizzotto M, Manuele S, Fiore V, Taverna G, Biagio C, Calitro M. Despite being treated with antiresorptive drugs, the severe osteoporosis (SO) is being considered as a condition in which patients are still subject to one or more vertebral or femoral fractures, or non-vertebral or non-femoral fractures, i.e., of other parts of the body such as the wrist, shoulder, tibia, ribs or hip. These patients are defined as non-responders (NRs) to the antiresorptive therapy, and recent research has shown that they represent 10-25% of all SO patients. During the last almost 3 years a new drug has become available in Italy, called teriparatide (rh-PTH-1-34), produced in Escherichia coli using the recombinant-DNA technique. It shows remarkable trophic and anabolic actions on the bones, and proved to be very useful for treating the osteoporosis in general. This study describes our experience in using teriparatide for the treatment of SO in a sample of 141 elderly women of mean age 73.4+/-5.8 years, with a mean number of fractures of 3.0+/-0.85, with a spine deformity index (SDI) of 5.92+/-1.27 and a mean vertebral T-Score (L1-L4) of -3.15+/-0.39, and a mean femoral T-Score of -2.50+/-0.28. All these patients had been treated with antiresorptive drugs for at least 1 year: specifically 70 of them with Alendronate, 42 of them with Risedronate and 29 of them with Raloxifene. For 18 months, all these patients were injected subcutaneously with 20mug of teriparatide, with the daily addition of 1g of calcium and 880IU of vitamin D. The study was continued for 24 months, at the end of which the patients continued to take only calcium and vitamin D. The patients underwent a CBM-DEXA control of vertebral column and femur every 6 months, and they were also administered a Quality-of-Life Questionnaire of the European Foundation for Osteoporosis (QUALEFFO). The QUALEFFO (41 items) questionnaire to evaluate the changes in the quality-of-life (QoL) and the consumption of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) was also recorded. The results showed that teriparatide protected 96.5% against new fractures (only five new fractures occurred), bone mineral density (BMD) increased approximately by 12% in the vertebral column and by 11% in the femur, consumption of NSAIDs was reduced at the early stage approximately 80%, the QoL improved considerably and remained so during the 18 months of teriparatide treatment, with only a slight decrease during the 6 subsequent months.

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