Reviews in Clinical Gerontology

Clinical geriatrics

Osteoporosis treatment and the older patient

Roger H Jaya1 c1 and Sarah L Marrinana1

a1 Department of Geriatric Medicine, Freeman Hospital, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK


Osteoporosis is a common, chronic condition. Fracture risk assessment tools are increasingly being used to identify those patients who may benefit from treatment, but in older patients clinical judgement is still essential in deciding whom to treat. The treatment of osteoporosis in older people has seen several important developments in recent years. Whilst bisphosphonates are the mainstay of treatment, several newer medications have proven benefit in terms of increases in bone mineral density and fracture prevention. Additionally, some of the newer therapies have characteristics that particularly lend themselves to use in an older population group. This article focuses upon treatment of osteoporosis in older people with an emphasis on newer drug and therapeutic options.

(Online publication February 24 2011)


c1 Address for correspondence: Dr Roger H Jay, Consultant Geriatrician, Level 6, Freeman Hospital, Newcastle upon Tyne NE7 7DN. Email: