Treating osteoporosis

Osteoporosis, and the fractures it causes, is a long term condition that, as yet, has no cure. The main aims of treatment are to prevent further fractures and relieve pain so that patients can continue to live as healthy and active a life as possible.

Doctors will often use a range of different treatments, including oestrogen and calcitonin hormone therapies, calcium and vitamin D supplements and medicines including bisphosphonates and selective oestrogen receptor modulators (SERMs).

Roche’s treatment portfolio includes a bisphosphonate for use in osteoporosis. Bisphosphonates are currently the most widely prescribed medicines for osteoporosis and work by slowing down the rate of bone loss.

The traditional method for measuring response to treatment, bone mass densitometry (BMD), can take up to two years to demonstrate an improvement to bone density (Source:National Osteoporosis Society). In contrast, Roche’s Elecsys range of diagnostic and monitoring tests enables progress to be monitored as early as three to six months after starting treatment. 

The tests include the Elecsys® Bone Marker assays (ß-CrossLaps, total P1NP, N-Mid Osteocalcin and Vitamin D3-OH), the Elecsys® Hormone assays (PTH, Oestradiol, Testosterone, DHEAS and SHBG) and bone mineral assays (Calcium and Phosphate).

The range can be used in hospital laboratories via Roche’s cobas® or MODULAR Analytics automated serum work area platforms. And the information retrieved from these tests helps medical teams take decisions on the most appropriate treatment with the lowest level of side-effects for their patients.