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Curr Gastroenterol Rep. 2011 Feb;13(1):40-8. doi: 10.1007/s11894-010-0166-4.

Bone disorders in chronic liver diseases.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Georgetown University, Washington, DC 20007, USA.


Bone disease is a major complication of chronic liver disease. Osteomalacia is quite uncommon despite low vitamin D levels in the majority of patients with cirrhosis. In contrast, osteoporosis is quite common, occurring in up to 50% of patients. Osteoporosis can result in spontaneous or low-impact fractures in patients with chronic liver diseases, adversely affecting morbidity, quality of life, and survival. The general biology of osteoporosis, including its pathogenesis, diagnostic tools, and rationale for treatment, have been determined largely empirically from studies of postmenopausal women with osteoporosis. Treatment regimens with modification of risk factors, use of vitamin D, and supplementation with calcium and bisphosphonates have been shown to be effective in select groups of patients with chronic liver diseases.

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