Author(s): Somford MP, Draijer FW, Thomassen BJ, Chavassieux PM, Boivin G,
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Abstract Unusual fractures of the femur diaphysis have been reported in patients treated with alendronate and, although no causal relationship has been established, excessive suppression of bone turnover and length of treatment with alendronate have been implicated in their pathogenesis. We report here clinical, biochemical, and radiological findings of a patient with rheumatoid arthritis and multiple risk factors for fractures who was treated with alendronate for 8 yr and developed spontaneous bilateral subtrochanteric/diaphyseal fractures. Bone biopsies obtained form the iliac crest and the femur showed decreased bone formation with histomorphometric evidence of markedly increased bone resorption at the femur. These results show for the first time that an imbalance between bone resorption and bone formation at the affected bone is associated with the occurrence of these atypical femur fractures. The cause of this imbalance is currently unknown, and further studies of the epidemiology and pathogenesis of diaphyseal femur fractures are warranted.
This article was published in J Bone Miner Res
and referenced in Journal of Osteoporosis and Physical Activity