- In post-menopausal women, the use of oral bisphosphonates was associated with a 6-fold increased risk for hospital admission with osteonecrosis of the jaw.
- Risk was about 0.6/1000 in ever-users of oral bisphosphonates over 5 years.
Why this matters
- At present, about 1 in 10 post-menopausal UK women is prescribed oral bisphosphonates; however, concerns remain about their adverse effects.
- Epidemiological evidence on risk for osteonecrosis of the jaw associated with oral bisphosphonate use is less conclusive.
- Risk of hospital admission for osteonecrosis of the jaw was examined among post-menopausal women (n=521,695; age, 64.7 years at baseline) by their use of oral bisphosphonates, history of cancer and other factors.
- Funding: Cancer Research UK and Medical Research Council.
- 100 women had a first hospital admission with osteonecrosis of the jaw at a mean age of 72.4 years during a mean follow-up of 8.2 years per woman.
- Compared with never-users, ever-users had a 6-fold increased risk for hospital admission for osteonecrosis of the jaw (adjusted RR, 6.09; 95% CI, 3.83-9.66; P<.0001>
- History of cancer was associated with increased risk for osteonecrosis of the jaw in never-users of oral bisphosphonates (RR, 3.40; 95% CI, 2.22-5.22; P<.0001>
- Over a 5-year period from age 70 to 74 years, the hospital admission rate for osteonecrosis of the jaw was 0.09 per 1000 in never-users with no history of cancer and 0.69 per 1000 in ever-users of oral bisphosphonates.
- Identification of osteonecrosis of the jaw using the available hospital record ICD-10 codes.