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Comparison of the effects of alendronate and alfacalcidol on hip bone mineral density and bone turnover in Japanese men having osteoporosis or osteopenia with clinical risk factors for fractures.

Author(s): Iwamoto J, Sato Y, Uzawa M, Takeda T, Matsumoto H

Affiliation(s): Institute for Integrated Sports Medicine, Keio University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan. jiwamoto@sc.itc.keio.ac.jp

Publication date & source: 2009-08-31, Yonsei Med J., 50(4):474-81. Epub 2009 Aug 19.

Publication type: Randomized Controlled Trial

PURPOSE: The comparative effects of alendronate and alfacalcidol on bone mineral density (BMD) and bone turnover have already been established in postmenopausal women with osteoporosis. An open-labeled prospective study was conducted to compare the treatment effects of alendronate and alfacalcidol on hip BMD and bone turnover in Japanese men with osteoporosis or osteopenia with clinical risk factors for fractures. MATERIALS AND METHODS: One hundred twelve men with osteoporosis or osteopenia with clinical risk factors for fractures (mean age: 71.4 years) were randomly divided into two groups of 56 patients each: the alendronate (5 mg daily) and alfacalcidol (1 microg daily) groups. The BMD of the total hip, urinary level of cross-linked N-terminal telopeptides of type I collagen (NTX), and serum levels of bone-specific alkaline phosphatase (BSAP) were measured during the 12-month-treatment period. RESULTS: Forty-five patients in the alendronate group and 42 patients in the alfacalcidol group completed the trial. Alendronate increased BMD (+2.3% at 12 months) following reductions in the urinary level of NTX (-46.4% at 3 months) and serum level of BSAP (-34.1% at 12 months), while alfacalcidol sustained BMD (-1.9% at 12 months) as well as the urinary level of NTX (+13.2% at 3 months) and serum level of BSAP (+1.8% at 12 months). CONCLUSION: The present study confirmed that alendronate has better efficacy than alfacalcidol (active control) in increasing hip BMD and reducing bone turnover in Japanese men with osteoporosis or osteopenia with clinical risk factors for fractures.

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