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Volume 22 , Issue 1
January/February 2007

Current Issues Forum

Nicholas M Dello Russo, DMD, MScD / Marjorie K. Jeffcoat, DMD / Robert E. Marx, DDS / Paul Fugazzotto, DDS

The development of osteonecrotic lesions of the jaws has been described as being associated with the use of bisphosphonates. Although most clinical reports described the association between necrotic lesions and the use of this group of medications for the management of osseous lesions associated with malignancies such as multiple myeloma, metastatic breast cancer, or prostate cancer, there are reports of osteonecrosis in the jaws of patients who are using oral bisphosphonates to treat osteoporosis.

Given the number of patients taking this medication for the management of osteoporosis, it is obvious that the risks and benefits of the medication need to be clearly defined. Could you comment on the risks of oral bisphosphonate use toward the development of osteonecrotic lesions of the jaws? In addition, could you postulate on studies that may better define this risk?

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