Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Osteoporosis Health Center

Font Size

Nitroglycerin May Increase Bone Density

Study Shows Heart Treatment May Have Benefit as Bone-Building Medicine

Nitroglycerin for Bones continued...

The group taking the nitroglycerin also had an increase in a marker of bone formation and a decrease in a marker for bone loss.

Headache was the most common side effect reported by those in the nitroglycerin group, with 35% of participants complaining of it compared to 5.4% in the placebo group in the first month. Over time, the headaches in the treated women declined.

The study was funded by the Canadian Institute of Health Research and the Physicians' Services Incorporated.

Jamal has received support for board membership from Novartis, Amgen, and Warner-Chilcott and has been a consultant for Genzyme, Warner-Chilcott, Novartis, and Shire.

Too Early to Recommend as Treatment

The study results are ''very intriguing," says Sundeep Khosla, MD, a professor of medicine at the College of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. He wrote an editorial to accompany the study results.

However, he adds, it ''would be a little premature to start using this." The effect of the medicine on fracture risk needs more study, he tells WebMD.

For now, the good news of the new research may be for those women already taking nitroglycerin to relieve angina, he says. "If a woman is already on nitroglycerin for heart disease -- she has to take it anyway -- maybe she can take some comfort in the fact it may be helping her bones also.”

Khosla has served on a scientific advisory board for Amgen, which makes Prolia, an osteoporosis medicine.

1 | 2

Today on WebMD

Women working out and walking with weights
Reduce bone loss and build stronger muscles.
Chinese cabbage
Calcium-rich foods to add to your diet.
woman stretching
Get the facts on osteoporosis.
Porous bone
Causes, symptoms, risk factors, and treatment.
senior woman
Woman holding plate of brocolli
wrist xray
Superfood for Bones
mature woman
sunlight in hands
man and woman in front of xray
woman with dumbbells