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The predictive value of bone turnover markers during discontinuation of alendronate: the PROSA study

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In patients discontinuing ALN after a median of 7.0 years (range 5.0-20.0 years), BMD decreased, and bone turnover markers increased within the premenopausal reference range over 2 years. Increased p-CTX after 3 months was associated with greater bone loss at the hip confirming that maintenance of BMD is dependent on continued suppression of bone turnover.

INTRODUCTION: It is unknown how to monitor patients discontinuing alendronate (ALN) after more than 5 years. We investigated if BTM measured before or during treatment discontinuation with ALN predict bone loss after 1 or 2 years.

METHODS: PROSA was a cohort study conducted at Aarhus University Hospital including postmenopausal women and men above 50 years treated with ALN ≥ 5 years who had osteopenia at the hip and BMD T-score at the lumbar spine > - 4. ALN was discontinued and BTMs were measured at baseline, months (M) 1, 3, 6, and 12, and DXA was performed at baseline, M6, and M12. We extended the study and measured BTMs and performed DXA at M24. The primary endpoint was if changes in p-CTX at M3 or M6 predict changes in THBMD after 1 year ( Clinicaltrials.gov : NCT03051620).

RESULTS: We enrolled 136 participants discontinuing ALN after a median of 7.0 years (range 5.0-20.0 years) in PROSA and 124 participants in PROSA Extension. There was a significant decrease in LSBMD - 0.74% ± 0.27, THBMD - 2.65% ± 0.39, FNBMD - 2.35% ± 0.33, and trabecular bone score - 0.97% ± 0.35 and an increase in p-CTX by 61.1% ± 4.7 (p < 0.05 for all) after 24 months. Increase in p-CTX at M3 was associated with bone loss at the hip sites at M12 and M24.

CONCLUSION: In patients discontinuing ALN, BMD decreased significantly and BTMs increased within the reference range over 2 years. An increase in p-CTX after 3 months was associated with greater bone loss at the hip confirming that maintenance of BMD during treatment discontinuation is dependent on continued suppression of bone turnover.

Original languageEnglish
JournalOsteoporosis International
ISSN0937-941X
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 30 Jan 2021

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