Skip to Content

Medicines, Osteoporosis, and Fractures

Topic Overview

Many medicines seem to be related to bone fractures or to bone thinning (osteoporosis) that can lead to fractures. These medicines include:

  • Corticosteroid medicines. These are used to treat conditions such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). If you use them for 6 months or longer, they can lead to steroid-induced osteoporosis.
  • Thyroid replacement medicine, if the dose is more than the body needs. This should be monitored by checking the level of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) at least every year.
  • Antiseizure medicines. Examples are carbamazepine and phenytoin.
  • Medicines used to treat endometriosis. They include leuprolide (Lupron) and nafarelin (Synarel).
  • Aromatase inhibitors. These are used to treat breast cancer.
  • Hormone therapy to treat prostate cancer.
  • Some antidepressant medicines called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). SSRIs are used to treat many conditions, including depression, fibromyalgia, and premenstrual syndrome.
  • Heparin, if used for a long time. Heparin is a blood thinner.
  • Depo-Provera, if used for a long time. It's a birth control medicine given in a shot.
  • Antacids that contain aluminum, if they are overused. These kinds of antacids remove calcium from your body.
  • Some diabetes medicines. Examples are pioglitazone (Actos) and rosiglitazone (Avandia).

Related Information

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Carla J. Herman, MD, MPH - Geriatric Medicine
Current as of January 24, 2014

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

© 1995-2014 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.

Symptom Checker

Feeling under the weather?

Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.

Decision Points

Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.

You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:

Also in this Section

Health Library