Parathyroid Hormone as a Treatment for Osteoporosis

Eric C. Buxton, Iljie Kim Fitzgerald, Nancy E Lane

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Current medical therapies to treat osteoporosis, including both anti-resorptive and anabolic agents, are aimed at correcting the imbalance between bone resorption and bone formation. The newest and most promising anabolic treatment to date is the use of intermittent, subcutaneous fragments of recombinant human parathyroid hormone (rhPTH, teriparatide, Forteo™). Administered as monotherapy, this well-tolerated treatment significantly increased bone mineral density (BMD) of the lumber spine, femoral neck and total body in women with postmenopausal osteoporosis, and reduced the risk of vertebral and non-vertebral fractures. Teriparatide administered in combination with hormone replacement therapy (HRT) in postmenopausal women resulted in significantly increased bone mass in the lumbar spine, total hip and total body compared with HRT alone, and was accompanied by dramatic reductions in the incidence of vertebral fractures. Preliminary studies of a treatment regimen combining teriparatide and the anti-resorptive bisphosphonate alendronate showed no alteration in hPTH's known anabolic effect on vertebral BMD, and a slight improvement in total hip, total body, and radial diaphysis BMD compared to hPTH alone. Finally, early studies in men suggest that teriparatide in combination with a bisphosphonate appears to be of clinical benefit in reducing the risk of male osteoporotic fractures as well. In summary, multiple clinical trials have documented the safety and efficacy of teriparatide, both as monotherapy and in combination with bisphosphonates, HRT and calcitonin, for the treatment of osteoporosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)345-372
Number of pages28
JournalToday's Therapeutic Trends
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2003
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Parathyroid Hormone as a Treatment for Osteoporosis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this