Among the pharmacological treatments for osteoporosis studied, teriparatide appeared to be most effective in preventing new non-vertebral fractures, according to new research published in Cell Physiology and Biochemistry.

Patients with osteoporosis experience a decrease in bone mass and strength which can increase the risk of fragile fractures. Study authors from Xiangya Hospital of Central South University, Changsha, China, conducted a network meta-analysis to determine which osteoporosis therapies were more preferable than others in regards to safety and efficacy. They synthesized direct and indirect data to assess new, non-vertebral fractures, hip and wrist fractures, and adverse events. 

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The researchers found that patients treated with alendronate, denosumab, teriparatide had a reduced risk of new, non-vertebral fractures vs. patients treated with placebo. The agents alendronate, denosumab, and zoledronic acid exhibited greater efficacy in the prevention of hip fractures. No significant differences were seen, however, in regards to the prevention of wrist fractures.

For adverse events, zoledronic acid showed a significantly increased risk of adverse events vs. alendronate, denosumab, raloxifene, and placebo. 

Overall, teriparatide was ranked highest in the prevention of new, non-vertebral fractures according to the surface under the cumulative ranking curve (SUCRA). Etidronate an denosumab were also acknowledged for having a balanced safety and efficacy profile. 

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