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People's Pharmacy

Drugs can raise risk of fractures

September 13, 2010|Joe Graedon, Teresa Graedon | The People's Pharmacy

Dozens of drugs can weaken bones. Oral corticosteroids such as prednisone are especially problematic when used for long periods of time. Even inhaled steroids (Advair, Flovent, Symbicort, etc.) may pose problems over time. People with osteoporosis should work closely with a doctor to develop a treatment strategy.

I have taken prednisone for years due to an arthritic condition. Because of stomach upset, my doctor has prescribed Nexium to prevent an ulcer. I was recently diagnosed with osteoporosis and wonder what can be done to counteract the bone-damaging effects of my medicine.

Dozens of drugs can weaken bones. Oral corticosteroids such as prednisone are especially problematic when used for long periods of time. Even inhaled steroids (Advair, Flovent, Symbicort, etc.) may pose problems over time.

There also is concern that regular reliance on acid-suppressing drugs such as Nexium (esomeprazole), Prevacid (lansoprazole) and Prilosec (omeprazole) might increase the risk for fractures.

Because you have osteoporosis, you are at high risk for a fracture. It is essential that you work with your doctor to develop a treatment strategy.

I'm a newlywed, and I have severe vaginal dryness all the time. Everything there is so dry that it itches constantly, and it really hurts when my husband tries to touch me to "get things started."

I tried using a moisturizer (Cetaphil), and it helps temporarily, but the relief is short-lived. Could extra-virgin olive oil help me?

First, check with your gynecologist to make sure there is no infection causing the symptoms. Oil may be helpful, but only if you and your husband are not using latex-barrier contraceptives. If you are, look for a water-based lubricant that would not destroy latex.

Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist, and Teresa Graedon is an expert in medical anthropology and nutrition. http://www.peoplespharmacy.com.

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