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Curr Med Res Opin. 2007 Feb;23(2):293-9.

An analysis of which anti-osteoporosis therapeutic regimen would improve compliance in a population of elderly adults.

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Twin Research and Genetic Epidemiology Unit, St. Thomas' Hospital, King's College London, UK.



Although medications to prevent osteoporotic fractures have been proven to be effective, compliance to these therapies is generally poor. Therapeutic regimens for different anti-osteoporotic medications differ widely and it is currently unknown which regimen would be most preferred by patients.


We conducted a large, population-based study to discern which therapeutic attributes would be most preferable to a population representative of the age and sex distribution of patients with osteoporosis.


Our study sample was restricted to persons aged 55 years and over and comprised 2485 individuals (mean age of 64.5 years). The study population was predominantly female (90.3%) and two-thirds of the respondents reported current daily medication use. Nearly half (45%) of the study population preferred to take medications daily, while one in five preferred weekly therapy and 30% preferred monthly therapy (p < 0.0001 for between proportion comparisons). When given the option of choosing between three different medication regimen scenarios, those subjects not currently using anti-osteoporotic medications preferred a theoretical regimen which was daily and did not involve subsequent fasting and maintaining an upright posture.


Our data suggest that compliance with osteoporotic medications could be improved if patients are able to choose a therapeutic regimen best suited to their particular needs. The majority of subjects preferred a drug which was taken daily and with minimal inconvenience, rather than a weekly drug with slightly more inconvenience. Given that most physicians currently prescribe anti-osteoporotic therapy as a weekly regimen, at the time of diagnosis physicians should ascertain which regimen would be most preferable to patients prior to initiating therapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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