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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I posted last week thinking this might be caused by my anti-convulsant or something because I've never been on steroids long term, only a few weeks here and there well over 10 yrs ago, since then only a couple of injections and some pulses via IV in hospital.

My dentist confirmed today that there is significant bone loss in my lower jaw and so I'm off to see the doc to get him to check out the rest of me - bit concerned now :eek:

Just wonder if anyone else has a similar story that can't be attributed to steroid use?

love
Lily
 

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Hello Lily, I too, have never taken steroids long term. I have arthritis in my jaw that can cause great discomfort. My dentist wanted me to have my wisdom teeth extracted, but surgeon said no..he was afraid he would break my jaw. I had a bone density test last year, which showed i have osteopenia, one step away from osteoporosis. I thought I was getting enough calcium thru m y diet, but apparently not. Hope you get a good report from your doctor. Keep us posted. Rose
 

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((hugs))

hope all goes well, I have not been on significant long term steroids either, constant steroids for a couple of years, some bursts of high dose oral, and several really large doses of iv, I had my dentist tell me that I had bone loss too, but a bone density scan showed that there were no problems with my bones at all, I think there are a load of reasons and factors in this, but hope everything looks ok, ((hugs))
 

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The Other Illinois Tammy
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Lily,
I am sorry to hear that you are having the trouble that you are. I have been on and off steriods like you, however so far have not developed any bone loss that I know of. You have raised a question for me to now about the bones. If you find any answers would love to know what you find out please. I hope you feel better soon.
 

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Hi Lily,

I have osteopenia from my last bone density test a couple of years ago. I have taken short burst of steroids and was on 5mg for a few of months last year.

I need to ask my rhumey this week if I am due for another bone density test.
Love,
Lyn


 

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LupusLyn
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Bone Loss

I too have bone loss. I was just at my dentist yesterday and had a full set of x-rays, and was told that I have bone loss in my upper jaw.

I have never taken steroids yet. So maybe that doesn't matter if you take steroids. Sorry I can't be of more help!

LOL
Lyn
 

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Hi Lily,

I hope, your test shows that the rest of your bones, are in good shape.

I read, on one site that if a person is on 5mgs of steroids, for longer than 3mos..they should be on a bone protector.

Apparently, calcium cannot be absorbed by our bones, if on steroids. On the site, it said that vitamin C and another one..I believe it was E, helps calcium be absorbed by our bodies.

Also, calcium citrate is more easily absorbed by our bodies, as compared to calcium carbonate.

I don't know why dr's wait until our bones are on the verge of going bad, to treat us with a bone protector. Mine never, ever mentioned that my body wouldn't be able to absorb the calcium I take..while taking prednisone. My dr, simply stated, that I should take calcium. I suppose, I could take large amounts until the cows come home, and it would do me no good..

I don't think many people taking steroids realize this..reality.

I intend to talk to my Rheumy at my next appt, about this concern.

Three mos, isn't a long time, so it must not take very long, for steroids to damage our bones...and, 5mgs is not a high dose..really.

Please, know I will be thinking of you, Lily and hoping for the best for you, as always..

Love,
Sandy
 

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Bone loss

Lily,

Sorry to hear about your situation and I hope they are able to get to the bottom of it. Women from the age of 30 or so begin to produce less oestrogen and other hormones as our bodies change. I know it is young when you consider it is usually another 15-20 years before menopause but it is a natural occurrence. (Could be why we find a stray man hair in places that shouldn’t have one) anyway, with decrease oestrogen, bone loss can and often occurs. This is why woman who have total hysterectomies at a young age usually are given calcium or medications that protect the bones along with woman who go through menopause at a normal age. This practice is much more evident in the USA then it is here in the UK. (I lived in both countries). I have noticed that bone preservation is not commonly practiced here in the UK and I don’t know if it is in Australia.

My mother in law, 72, has been on steroids since she was 30 for asthma. She is on steroid inhalers all the time and on and off prednisone. A few months ago she fell over and shattered her wrist. I asked her about bone loss prevention and she said it has never been discussed by her doctor, she was sent for a bone density scan and sure enough she has osteoporosis and bone loss throughout her body. This bone density scan was not even suggested, she had to ask for it and still is not on any medication to help. I don’t understand why it is not a practice, menopause, any form of steroid use then calcium or bone protecting drugs are issued. My doctor make me take it if I have a steroid injection and any time I am back on steroids, what ever the dose is but that is because I questioned her about it from the beginning! I hope this may help.

Stacie
 

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Hi, I have been given steroid injections and oral steroids since last Aug (08) and then calcium in January... going for my first bone density scan today. Keeping everything crossed as I have had a hysterectomy and one ovary removed too. I walk alot so am hoping all that weight bearing should have helped...:lol:
 

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All is not dispair - bone loss can be reversed!:nervous:Whew!

I had my first dexa bone scan done in 2005, which showed osteopenia in my hips. I began taking 500mg calcium carbonate (calcium citrate is very hard on the stomach) with vit D twice a day, just like any other prescription. I also take a multi vit with iron daily that also has some calcium in it.

When I had my next dexa scan done a year later, the osteopenia had been reversed. My scans continue to be normal, and I continue to take calium twice a day.

I have been on maitenance doses of pred with intervals of higher doses for over two years now.

Belly up to the milk bar girls and guys!
 

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Hiya

Really sorry to hear about your situation.

I have osteopenia and on regualr calcium tablets called Adcal, these are supposed to help reverse what the steriods (been on for over a year) have done to my bones.

If you are not taking calcium tablets I suggest you start as every little helps and talk to your dr about the situation, as it must be worring to you.

Hope it all works out.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks all. I am going to get a copy of the Radiologists report and see my GP.

You have made me think..............I am on inhaled steroids, I forgot about that! I had a bone density scan done 10 yrs ago after my hysterectomy (left ovaries - but Lupus flared out of control) so it's probably time for another one.

I'm also nearing menopause so need to get that checked with a blood test seeing as I don't have any other way to tell :) I have been having waves of heat and sweating come over me and it's a more short lived thing than my normal lupie sweats so that might be another clue!

I think they are pretty good here about putting you on meds, but maybe not so good on discovering bone loss in the first place - depends on the doc I guess. My GP usually puts most things down to Lupus :rolleyes:............my Lupy doc is great though :)

love
Lily
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Hi everyone,

I saw my GP today for my normal lupie bloods and he has ordered a bone density test for Friday. He also took bloods for thyroid because my Grandfather had Graves disease, Vitamin D because I have a history of deficiency and he's checking my hormonal status as I'm getting close to that áge'. That should cover a fair few possible causes so we will see what happens :)

love
Lily
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Hi all,

Just an update, had my bone scan and the rest of my body is above a young normal (I'm nowhere near young normal age :lol: ) So my GP is going to get someone else to review the jaw x-ray in the near future. He did confirm that anticonvulsants can cause bone-loss. In fact it's one of the criteria for getting Medicare to cover the cost of a bone scan.

So that's one load off my mind although still a bit of a mystery. However had some other things show up which I will put in another post.

love
Lily
 

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Hi Lily

Thats great news on the bone scan. Strange about the bone loss in the jaw but hopefully you can get to the bottom of it and, more importantly, something which will either halt it or redress it.

I wonder would taking a bone strengthener like Fosamax be appropriate for localised bone loss?

Cheers
Joan:rose:
 
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