Osteoporosis

Jenny - Interview 17

Female
Age at interview: 62
Age at diagnosis: 55

Brief outline: Diagnosed in 2003. She has been on several medications' Fosamax, Actonel and Bonviva. She has experienced side effects with all of them. Now off medication and waiting for her next DXA scan. Considering taking the newly licensed once a year drug Aclasta (zoledronic acid).

Background: Jenny is married and has one adult son. She was aware of osteoporosis before diagnosis because for many years, she has had a dairy-free diet due to ME and other allergies.

Audio & video

In 2003 Jenny fractured her arm and asked her GP to send her for a bone density scan. Jenny was aware of osteoporosis because due to ME and allergies she has had a dairy-free diet for the last twenty years. The scan confirmed her fears of having osteoporosis.
 
Following her diagnosis she was prescribed Fosamax but suffered badly from indigestion and other stomach problems. Despite side effects Jenny persisted with this drug. After almost a year her medication was changed to Actonel. She took this drug for about two years and although side effects were not as severed as with Fosamax she still suffered from indigestion. 
 
Jenny has had bone density scans every two years but only her first DXA scan was done through the NHS. Her third scan revealed that Actonel didn’t make any much difference to her bone mass density. In fact, her spine was getting worse and not better. She decided to go and get a consultant’s advice. The private consultant she saw prescribed her another medication' Bonviva. She took it for several months but again the drug affected her stomach. On her consultant’s advice she is currently off medication and waiting to have another bone density scan. Jenny is considering to try the newly licensed yearly drug; Aclasta (zoledronic acid).
 
Jenny exercises regularly at home but has stopped attending Pilates and yoga classes because she considers that some exercises are not appropriate for someone with osteoporosis Her physiotherapist gave her several exercises to do that have improved her neck problems and allow her to sleep better at night. She also recommends the exercise book publish by the National Osteoporosis Society. One activity that she and her husband enjoy doing is dancing. She says “pounding the floor several times a week is brilliant for osteoporosis”

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