Predisposing factors associated with atypical femur fracture among postmenopausal Korean women receiving bisphosphonate therapy: 8 years’ experience in a single center

Koh JH1, Myong JP2, Yoo J1, Lim YW3, Lee J1, Kwok SK1, Park SH1, Ju JH4.
Osteoporos Int. 2017 Jul 27. doi: 10.1007/s00198-017-4169-y. [Epub ahead of print]

The risk factors for atypical femur fracture in patients exposed to bisphosphonates for at least 1 year were examined. Prolonged and continuous use of bisphosphonates, long-term use of glucocorticoids, and a higher body mass index were associated with increased risk of atypical femur fracture.

The purpose of the present study is to determine whether rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and other clinical factors are associated with an increased risk of bisphosphonate (BP)-related atypical femur fracture (AFF).

A retrospective nested case-control study of patients who had taken BPs for at least 1 year was conducted. Patients with AFF were identified by reviewing surgical and radiographic records. Three controls with no history of AFFs were randomly selected and age- and sex-matched to each patient with AFFs. Cox proportional hazard models were used to analyze the independent contribution of risk factors to BP-related AFF.

Among the 35,104 patients prescribed BPs for at least 1 year, 43 females (mean age, 68 years) suffered AFFs (0.12%). Patients with AFFs were exposed to BPs for a mean of 7.3 years. Patients with AFFs were exposed to BPs for longer than those without AFFs and continued treatment without a drug holiday. More patients with AFF than controls had taken glucocorticoids and disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs. Multivariate Cox regression analyses estimated that long-term use of glucocorticoids, prolonged exposure to BP without cessation, and every 1 kg/m2 increase in the body mass index (BMI) increased the hazard ratio for AFFs by 3.0, 5.2, and 1.2, respectively.

Prolonged and continuous use of BPs, long-term use of glucocorticoids, and a higher BMI increase the risk of AFFs. Switching long-term BP and glucocorticoid users to other bone-protective agents should be considered.


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