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I'm posting my experience with long term use of omeperazole as a warning to women about the very real danger of developing Osteoporosis, especially when combined with other drugs that drain calcium from bones or prevent calcium absorption.
My first bone density (DEXA) scan in 2008 at the age of 65 showed a -2.8 reading in my spine, which indicated I already had Osteoporosis. Coincidentally, I was also diagnosed, or most likely misdiagnosed, with RA at this time and was started on two other medications, Methotrexate and Meloxicam that are known to compromise bone health. Meanwhile, my DEXA scores continued to decline, yet none of my doctors ever suggested there could be a correlation between the meds I was taking and bone loss. Actually, quite the opposite. Their recommendation was that I take additional drugs, specifically those designed to "build bone," (albeit not healthy bone), which carry their own worrisome side effects. While I understand that bone fracture is a real risk, my concerns regarding these drugs outweigh their potential benefits.
Aside from being worried and frustrated, it wasn't until my sister, who was in treatment for metastatic breast cancer, began to question the relationship between Omeperazole, Methotrexate and Meloxicam and bone loss. To make a very long, multi-year learning process short, I've been able to discontinue the use of Meloxicam and reduce my Methotrexate dosage. Unfortunately it's too late to rebuild the bone I've lost and my greatest challenge still lies with Omeperazole. I'm convinced that use of this drug for three decades this is the root cause of my Osteoporosis and while I'm again currently trying to wean myself from this drug, I only get so far without becoming too uncomfortable to continue. Finding this forum today has been a gift and I'm going to begin anew to become Omeperazole free.
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