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Nitroglycerin Ointment for the Prevention of Postmenopausal Osteoporosis (December).

Author(s): Beckett RD, Heck Sheehan A

Affiliation(s): < Manchester College School of Pharmacy, Fort Wayne, IN.

Publication date & source: 2011-10-18, Ann Pharmacother., [Epub ahead of print]

OBJECTIVE:To determine whether clinical trial data support the use of nitroglycerin for prevention of postmenopausal osteoporosis.DATA SOURCES:A literature search using MEDLINE (1966-September 2011) and EMBASE (1973-September 2011) was conducted using the search terms nitroglycerin, bone mineral density, fracture, and osteoporosis. References of identified articles were reviewed for additional citations.STUDY SELECTION AND DATA EXTRACTION:All English-language articles related to the use of nitroglycerin ointment in postmenopausal women were reviewed.DATA SYNTHESIS:Four observational studies reported significant improvements in bone mineral density of postmenopausal women with the use of nitrates. One pilot study and 2 prospective, randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trials reported conflicting RESULTS: Clinical data do not support use of nitroglycerin for this indication; its potential is limited at this time by inconclusive efficacy and a high incidence of headache. Further well-designed clinical trials demonstrating efficacy and safety of nitroglycerin ointment for prevention of postmenopausal osteoporosis are needed before this medication can be recommended for routine use.

Page last updated: 2011-12-09

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