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Published on 12 February 2008

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User-friendly osteoporosis therapy launched

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A formulation designed to help patients take osteoporosis supplementation regularly and correctly has been launched in the UK.

Actonel Combi combines dosing of once-weekly bisphosphonate (Actonel 35mg [risedronate]) with vitamin D (880IU) and the recommended daily dose of calcium (1,000mg) in a single pack.

Osteoporosis is usually symptom-free until a bone is fractured and compliance with treatment is often poor.

UK standard practice is to co-prescribe calcium and vitamin D with a bisphosphonate for osteoporosis patients.

However, research in the journal Osteoporosis International indicates that osteoporosis patients may not be receiving the full benefit of their osteoporosis treatment due to failure to fully comply with their co-prescribed calcium and vitamin D supplementation, which can lead to decreased ability of bisphosphonates to reduce fracture.

Oxfordshire GP Dr Sally Hope commented: “We can see from recent market research data conducted in Europe that 43% of patients are not taking any calcium and/or vitamin D supplementation with their bisphosphonate treatment, despite clear recommendations to do so.

“Providing calcium and vitamin D in a package with a bisphosphonate may be a simple solution to the problem, providing patients with an improved chance of fracture protection.”

Dr Richard Keen, consultant rheumatologist at London’s Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, commented: “As calcium interferes with the absorption of bisphosphonates, taking calcium supplements incorrectly could result in reduced effectiveness of osteoporosis therapy.

“Any measures that help overcome this issue are very welcome.”

Procter & Gamble



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