Will steroids have an adverse effect on osteoporosis?
Q: I am 38 years old and have osteoporosis T score - 2.5 in lumbar spine, which was diagnosed due to premature menopause. I also have asthma for the last 8-10 years. Last week, I had a sudden attack of asthma and despite taking Ventorlin (2 puffs) and Beclate 200 (2 puffs) thrice daily, it got worse. I developed 101 degrees fever and was prescribed Sparta 500 twice a day for 5 days, Beclate 200 twice daily and Ventorlin thrice daily. I have now been prescribed the same 2 inhalers and a Unicontin 400 once a day for 10 days, after which I have been asked to have Furocort 400 twice a day for 3 weeks and Furocort 200 twice a day for 365 days. Will the steroidal medication affect my osteoporosis?
A:Steroid medication does influence bone density and when taken for longer periods they increase the risk of osteoporosis. However, it is more important to control your asthma and the harmful effects of steroids can be counter acted to a certain extent by regular intake of calcium and vitamin D supplements.