Ask The Doctors: 04/09
Joint Hypermobility...Post-Surgery Mental Decline...Fosamax for the Knees?
Fosamax reduces the amount of calcium lost from bones and increases the density of bones, but it has not been proven to reverse osteoarthritic changes in joints such as the knee. One study has suggested that Fosamax may protect against the development of bone abnormalities associated with knee osteoarthritis, which may have a beneficial effect on the overall course of the disease; because Fosamax stops bone from breaking down, it may moderate the severity of the osteoarthritis. However, osteoarthritis causes the breakdown of cartilage between joints, and researchers found no association between Fosamax and changes in knee cartilage. It appears that while Fosamax may help reduce the bony abnormalities associated with osteoarthritis, it does not have any effect on the wearing away of the cartilage between the bones, which is the primary source of pain and disability in patients with osteoarthritis.