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Steroid-Induced Osteoporosis

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Topic Overview

Many people take oral or inhaled steroids, which include beclomethasone, flunisolide, and prednisone, for conditions such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Oral steroids and high-dose inhaled steroids can cause bone loss over time. If you are on these types of medicines for 6 months or longer, you are at increased risk for osteoporosis, which puts you at high risk for broken bones. After broken bones occur, healing can take a long time because of the decreased ability of your bones to rebuild due to osteoporosis.

If you are on long-term use of steroids, you should be monitored for bone loss.

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Heavy drinking is a health risk for many reasons, including the effects on bones. Research shows that chronic heavy alcohol use, especially during adolescence and young adult years, can dramatically affect bone health and increase the risk of osteoporosis later in life. What do doctors advise? Drink less for strong bones.   Calcium is an essential nutrient for healthy bones, and alcohol is its enemy. "Alcohol has multiple effects on calcium," says Primal Kaur, MD, an osteoporosis specialist at...

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 06, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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