Glucocorticoid-induced bone loss in dermatologic patients: An update

Brett T. Summey, Gil Yosipovitch

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Objective: To raise awareness of the new treatment options and current recommendations among dermatologists treating patients with systemic corticosteroids. Data Sources: MEDLINE peer-reviewed publications. Study Selection: English language and clinical pertinence to corticosteroid-induced osteoporosis. Data Extraction: Pertinent information on pathophysiologic, epidemiologic, clinical trial, cost-effectiveness, and treatment option data regarding corticosteroid-induced osteoporosis. Data Synthesis: Comprehensive summary of published data on the pathophysiologic, epidemiologic, clinical, and treatment data and current practice guidelines regarding corticosteroid-induced osteoporosis; creation of an algorithmic management approach for patients treated with long-term oral corticosteroids. Conclusions: Glucocorticoid-induced bone loss is the most predictable and debilitating complication of prolonged administration of systemic corticosteroids. Every dermatologist prescribing systemic corticosteroids must be aware of corticosteroid-induced osteoporosis and ensure that every patient is receiving general measures to prevent it. Despite efficacious preventive and therapeutic options, actual implementation of these strategies remains unacceptably low. Based on currently available evidence, the first choice for prevention and treatment of glucocorticoid- induced osteoporosis should be a potent oral bisphosphonate such as alendronate (70 mg/wk) or risedronate sodium (35 mg/wk). For patients with severe osteoporosis or patients with active osteoporotic fractures, the anabolic agent teriparatide (recombinant fragmented parathyroid hormone) should be considered as a first-line option for up to 2 years.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)82-90
Number of pages9
JournalArchives of Dermatology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2006
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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