Widely used osteoporosis drug may reduce type 2 diabetes risk by 36%. Researchers looked at how an anti-osteoporosis drug, alendronate, affects a person’s risk of developing diabetes.
Researchers found that patients who took osteoporosis drugs were 36% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who did not take the drug.
Diabetes is a metabolic disease that causes high blood sugar. Diabetes can lead to cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, neuropathy, blindness, and lower extremity amputation.
Previous studies have shown that some anti-osteoporosis drugs may influence glucose metabolism. Osteoporosis is a condition in which bones become weak and brittle.
The study was presented at the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes and the research may appear in the journal Diabetologia.
The study findings shows that patients who had taken alendronate were 36% less likely to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes than those who did not take the drug.
In addition, the researchers also found that those taking alendronate for more than 8 years were 53% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes compared to those who did not use the drug.
“It has been known for decades that people with diabetes are in greater risk of fractures, compared to people without diabetes,” Rikke Viggers, MD, one of the authors of the study, said. “In addition, a few studies during the last 10 years have suggested that treatments against osteoporosis may as well impact on glucose metabolism.”
“These results suggest that alendronate may protect against type 2 diabetes in a dose-dependent manner with a possible effect of higher compliance, but we question the mechanism of action,” she added.