Women's and Men's Health

Strontium Gives Strength

Widely used in Europe but much less so in the US, strontium reduces fracture risk. Strontium ranelate (SR), the most studied form, induces osteoblastogenesis, and has been shown to prevent and to reverse osteoporosis.

In a 3-year, phase III trial, 1,442 post-menopausal women with osteoporosis were randomized to placebo or SR at a dose of 2.0 g/d. All were also taking up to 1,000 mg/d caldium, and 400-800 IU/d Vitamin D, depending on baseline levels.

After 12 months, total vertebral fracture risk was reduced by 49% among the SR-treated women, who also had a 52% reduction in symptomatic fractures. By the end of the 3rd year, vertebral fracture risk was reduced by 41%, and there were signifi cant BMD (bone mass density) increases at the lumbar, femoral neck, and hip sites (Meunier PJ, el al. N Engl J Med. 2004; 350(5): 459-468).

There are no major safety issues with SR, but because strontium has a higher atomic mass than calcium, it can alter DEXA scans. Radiologists can correct for this if they know someone is staking strontium, but it is essential to inform the radiologist about this.

SR is a standard osteoporosis treatment in most of Europe. Unfortunately, it is not widely available in the US. Dr Richards has been prescribing strontium for years with great success! We use strontium citrate which studies show increases the tensile strength of bone by 15% over 2 yrs. (WWW.World Health.net, "Strontium: Breakthrough Against Osteoporosis" by Ward Dean, M.D.) The standard dose is 680 mg (2/day).

The bottom line is, we need to do a better job of preventing osteoporotic fractures. Unless we start doing things differently, our healthcare system will have to manage an estimated 3 million fractures each year by 2025, at a cost of $25.3 billion (Burge R, et al. J Bone Miner Res 2007;22(3); 465-475.

By applying what we know about strengthening collagen and utilizing all safe and scientifically sound nutritional interventions, I believe we can significantly reduce the burden of suffering and the economic costs of osteoporotic fractures.

-John Neustadt, ND
For Holistic Primary Care

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