Google Screened

FDA Reviews Potentially Dangerous Bone Drugs

Philadelphia Dangerous Medication Lawyers Report on Long-Term Use of Bisphosphonates

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently asked an advisory committee to determine if bisphosphonates-used to treat osteoporosis-should be taken long-term, and if patients who use the drugs for “long-term therapy” should take a break from the potentially dangerous medication. Bisphosphonates include drugs such as Fosamax, Actonel, Boniva, and Reclast.

These medications are primarily used to prevent fractures by preventing “resorption” of the bone during the bone-renewal process, ultimately adding bone mass. They have been shown to have success in reducing hip and spine fractures in some postmenopausal women, as well as reducing wrist and arm fractures.

Research, however, has shown a connection between long-term bisphosphonate use and a small risk of femur fractures, osteonecrosis of the jaw (death of the bones in the jaw), and esophageal cancer.

While most research has studied the drugs over periods of 3 to 5 years, some patients take the potentially unsafe drugs indefinitely. Because the risk may increase the longer the drugs are taken, the advisory committee was tasked with determining whether stronger warnings should be issued, and whether a ban on long-term use of these medications should be ordered.

After reviewing the available data, the FDA advisors voted to recommend that the labels or package inserts for each particular drug contain information that advises how long that any bisphosphonate drug should be taken. The advisors suggested that the labels should also include information regarding the length of time the drug can be considered effective, and that the effectiveness of the drug may lessen after a certain amount of time.

The advisory committee did not provide guidelines indicating what length of time may be appropriate for any of the available drugs, nor did they suggest that patients take a break from the drug. The advisors did indicate it would be helpful for the FDA to establish guidelines for length of use or drug-holiday schedules for each type of bisphosphonate.

Philadelphia Dangerous Medication Lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC:  Personalized and Skilled Legal Representation

While the FDA is tasked with ensuring the safety of the nation’s drug supply, it is vital that patients stay educated about the risks involved in taking their various medications. If these risks are not adequately explained to patients, either the prescribing physician or drug manufacturers may potentially be held liable for any resulting injuries. If you have questions about the ways in which medication has injured you or a loved one, please contact an experienced personal injury attorney. At McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC, our Philadelphia dangerous medication lawyers are committed to providing personalized and skilled representation to injured victims. Call us at 215-569-8488 or 302-888-1221, or contact us online for a free consultation with one of our Philadelphia product liability lawyers.