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The Forteo Mystery: What You Should Know About This Puzzling Drug


Pharmaceutical companies are constantly trying to outdo each other and to come up with new patentable drugs for diseases that already have existing drug treatments.. A good example of this is teriparatide, or Forteo in the US (Forsteo abroad), a new class of osteoporosis drug known as anabolic agents. This daily injectable drug was approved by the FDA in 2002.

Forteo is an incomplete synthetic or man-made form of the human parathyroid hormone (PTH). You see, human PTH has 84 amino acid residues but teriparatide has only 34. Teriparatide has become the osteoporosis drug of choice mainly for patients who can’t tolerate bisphosphonates, have failed to improve with bisphosphonate therapy, or suffer from extreme bone loss.

As touted in the drug’s insert, Forteo “increases bone mineral density and bone strength.”

Many unanswered questions

But the puzzling catch with Forteo is that the way in which it works remains a mystery. This is openly acknowledged by its maker, pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly and Company. As explained in the drug’s brochure, “the role of PTH in control of bone mass is still not really understood” and that “intermittent spikes of PTH, such as given by daily injection, will cause more increase in bone formation than in bone resorption… This has been shown in rats.”

Unfortunately, what has also been shown in rats is the development of osteosarcoma, a lethal bone cancer caused by an abnormal proliferation of osteoblasts or bone-forming cells. Below, I quote again from Eli Lilly’s pamphlet (

“During the drug testing process, the medicine in Forteo caused some rats to develop a bone cancer called osteosarcoma. In people, osteosarcoma is a serious but rare cancer. Osteosarcoma has been reported rarely in people who took Forteo. It is not known if people who take Forteo have a higher chance of getting osteosarcoma.”

Because of this serious side effect risk, Forteo is prescribed for a maximum of two years. This is as close as one can get to playing Russian roulette! Who would trade a potential fracture for the awful risk of acquiring a lethal cancer? And as if this were not enough, teriparatide has a long list of nasty side effects such as joint and chest pain, muscle pain and weakness, esophageal problems, nausea, and vomiting. Plus having to inject oneself subcutaneously each and every day is most certainly no picnic.

Exorbitant price tag leads to exorbitant profits

The unanswered questions don’t seem to hamper Forteo’s skyrocketing success. According to drug-industry analysts, an estimated 600,000 prescriptions were written in 2005, which generated more than $350 million in revenues. And in 2008, Eli Lilly reported $778 million in sales. (

Indeed, the future looks bright for Forteo. As predicted by Pharmacor’s June 2009 osteoporosis report, by 2018 Forteo sales may reach close to the $2 billion mark.

One easy way to explain these numbers is Forteo’s exorbitant price tag. It costs nearly eight times as much as bisphosphonates, running up a tab of about $6,700 a year. That’s a pretty high cost for a drug whose mechanism is not even remotely understood!

Doctors ignore ignorance?

Another puzzling aspect of this drug is that while doctors openly admit their ignorance regarding how it works, they choose to prescribe it anyway.

Dr. Roberto Pacifici, head of the division of endocrinology at Emory University School of Medicine, comments that “…how intermittent treatment (with teriparatide) works has remained a mystery”. (

This is clearly a rather unusual and perplexing situation to say the least.

And it sounds like a job for Agent 4T0…

Mission: Impossible

Remember the TV series with this name? I used to be a big fan of Mission: Impossible. Each episode began with secret recorded instructions to the brave agents describing a very complex and often dangerous mission. The agents could decide whether to accept the mission or not. Of course, the fearless members of the Impossible Mission Force (IMF) never walked away and in the end, always succeeded. But here’s what happens when a reluctant osteoporosis drug is the agent chosen for the mission… Read my Mission: Impossible spoof below:

“Good morning, Mr. Paratide. Your mission, should you decide to accept it, comes from the top boss, Big P.”

“You can call me Terry… What is my mission?”

“First, from now on your new name is Agent 4T0. Your mission is to strengthen this patient’s bones and report back to us detailing exactly what you did. And you have to report back to us fast, 4T0. Time is running out.”

“Well, I may be able to strengthen the bones, but I have no idea of what I’m doing! Big P knows that we’ve been trying to find out without success. I need written instructions!”

“You’re the ACTIVE INGREDIENT, for crying out loud! Plus Big P has given you a team of helpers…”

“What… you mean the Inactive Ingredients? I don’t see how glacial acetic acid, sodium acetate, mannitol, metacresol, and hydrochloric acid can help me. They’re INACTIVE, remember?”

“Stop acting like a coward, 4T0. Here’s a little secret for you: metacresol is highly flammable and poisonous – even lethal in the right dose. It can help you solve this mystery if anyone gets in your way. So get creative and solve it once and for all.”

“I’m not a fighter! I’m just a synthetic wannabe, I don’t know what to say…”

“Remember our motto: Ignorance is Strength. You don’t have to know anything… nobody has to know anything… that’s our strength, 4T0. Big P’s survival depends on ignorance. Just invent something and Big P will make sure that everyone will take our word for it.”

“Yes, I know that’s the way we’ve been operating in the past, but now people are waking up real fast…Why me, why me?”

“This tape will self-destruct in five seconds.”

“Oh, nooooooo!”

So there you have it.

Were you prescribed Forteo? Even if you weren’t, please share your experiences, thoughts, and comments with the community below.

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601 comments. Leave Yours Now →

  1. Mahendra March 27, 2015, 10:02 am

    My T score ios -4.2, started taking Terifrack by intaas. 3 fractures in spine, one shoulder dislocation, and other minor fractures at some places.

  2. Danny March 9, 2015, 9:08 pm

    I am looking for some ideas for my wife who has osteopososis (t=2.8). This is caused by taking the blood thinner warfarin for 21 years because she has a mechanical replacement heart valve. Many people may find themselves in this same dilemma. Vitamin K is at the root of it. In order for the blood thinning to work, vitamin K must be in scarcity, so you can’t eat a lot of healthy greens. When the warfarin puts vitamin K into scarcity, the liver makes less of the clotting chemicals so the blood is thinner, but it also makes less of the proteins needed to bring calcium into the bones, so they get progressively weaker. All the normal prescriptions for exercise and healthy living will not work to maintain bone health if the calcium bearing proteins can not get to the bones. What to do? I thought Forteo might be an answer, but it looks bad.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA March 10, 2015, 9:02 am

      Hi Danny,
      First, I commend you for doing this research on behalf of your wife, and gathering as much information as you can before ingesting osteoporosis drugs.

      Warfarin can be considered one more acidifying drug, so following the 80/20 balanced diet (as described in the Program) is a perfect solution. Believe it or not, even people taking bone-depleting drugs like corticosteroids have been successful while on the Save Our Bones Program. You and your wife can check Real Life Success Stories here:

  3. Kim March 8, 2015, 11:51 pm

    Know that I’m going to be given Forteo as a solution. Seeing endocrinologist tomorrow due to major bone issues caused by Actonel
    8/10-4/10 took Actonel as osteoporosis preventive.
    Medical issues:
    1/12–fell, fracturing L3
    4/12–left jaw dental work
    8/12–fell, breaking left shoulder
    10/12–left jaw, dental work
    11/13–spontaneous fracture of right femur
    4/14–removal of all molars in lower left jaw due to jaw deterioration
    7/14–spontaneous fracture of left femur
    2/2-left hip began aching as leaving airport.
    Approx 2/18–spontaneous left hip fracture.
    2/27–3 pins inserted into left hip

  4. LynnCS March 8, 2015, 12:09 am

    I took it for two months. I was surprised to not have any side effects as I am really sensitive, usually, to medications. I do worry about the cancer concern. I am exercising more than I was and found that it helps in so many ways. I’m on a whole food, plant based diet, so I feel I’m doing the right things now. I have taken Actonel in the past and I’m a bit angry about having had the wool pulled over my eyes then, but glad to have stopped it. I’m sure it did a lot of damage. I’m still not sure what to do. My doctor supports the healthy diet and is more alternative than many docs. Because I have broken some bones over the years, as recent as a broken ankle last year, where the surgeon said my bones were “soft,” he says that it’s more risky to continue to break bones than the “outside chance” of getting cancer. The C word is scary. I’ll keep reading your reviews, but need to decide soon. Wish me well. Lynn.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA March 8, 2015, 3:14 pm

      Hi Lynn,
      Good for you for asking questions and doing your research. Personally, I can’t imagine risking cancer to take a dangerous drug that, ultimately, won’t be good for my bone health – especially when there are effective, drug-free options like the Program. :)

      • LynnCS March 21, 2015, 3:23 pm

        Hi Vivian. Thanks so much for the reply. I used it for 2 months but can’t afford it. He has given me some forms to apply for help from the company and says…get this…”You have more concern over broken bones than cancer, at your age.” I am concerned about the bones, but am trying to up my exercise and keep an alkaline food plan. I hope it is good enough. Scary!

        • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA March 22, 2015, 2:48 pm

          I’d say both are important health concerns! Kudos for sticking to your beliefs, and choosing to go drug-free.

  5. Danielle February 19, 2015, 6:18 pm

    I am a 29 year old registered nurse and currently nursing my 9 month old daughter. 5 weeks ago I fell down the stairs, fracturing my T8 vertebrae. The official diagnosis was a 27% compression fx along with several other injuries including 2 bulging disks. I was put in a brace preventing me from bending. At my 2 week follow up appt the fracture had worsened to a 30% fracture. My neuro surgeon recommended I see a bone health specialist. I saw her today and she has recommended I take Forteo for a month to try and avoid surgery. The issue at hand is I have multiple bilateral kidney stones and have had these for the past 2 years. She is not sure if I can start this medication due to these stones and the possibility of making them larger or even multiply. I will have lab work done tomorrow to assess the risk. I’m also nervous that it may harm my child therefore I will have to stop breastfeeding. Now reading about the cancer risk scares me. I’m only 29 with a new family…not sure it’s worth the risk.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA February 20, 2015, 10:52 am

      Danielle, my heart goes out to you – it sounds like you have a lot on your plate! The decision to take drugs or not is, as always, entirely up to you. I can tell you that drugs do not heal; they artificially mimic the healing process and/or manage symptoms, and there is always a price to pay. You don’t mention whether or not you have the Program, but here’s a note on healing fractures.

      It’s important to make sure that sufficient bone and collagen building minerals are available, such as calcium, magnesium, zinc, boron, manganese, and copper. Vitamin K and D3 are also very important, as well as B12 (preferably taken with the rest of the B complex) and Vitamin C. Also, some antioxidants (lycopene and polyphenols) help build new bone. Maintaining an alkaline body pH is also very important. All these recommendations are also applicable to the prevention and reversal of bone loss.

  6. Lindy January 31, 2015, 10:48 pm

    I have been on Forteo for 18 months. No side effects, no problems. My first bone scan after a year was status quo (-3.3 in the hip), but no deterioration either. I am 52, and my doctor, who is in contact with another osteo specialist, highly recommended forteo for 2 years. I am small, thin, & physically active with a family history of osteo. I will follow through with treatment in the hopes I can keep what I have and maybe even ski again.

  7. GEORGE January 21, 2015, 4:47 am

    I am 25 and suffered a intracapsular femoral head fracture on my hip. It has been 3 months and it is still of nonunion despite my femoral head being alive.I visited another doc for a second opinion and he recommended Forteo for 1 month. Hopefully it will heal it right up or i will need hip replacement. Does anyone have their hip healed thanks to this drug?

  8. Richard January 17, 2015, 9:23 pm

    I am a 55 yeard old hypo-gonadal male with osteoporosis. I have been on Forteo for almost two years now. I have had no side effects except pain and swelling at the injection site. Prior to starting Forteo I had fractured 9 vertebra. Anything from bumping my head getting in the car to walking would fracture one. Since that time I have gained some height back and to my knowledge have not broken any more. I am due for a scan soon. At that time my rheumatoligist and I will decide how much longer to continue treatment or consider alternatives.

  9. Mary January 15, 2015, 9:20 pm

    After 2years on Forteo my COPD has disappeared,no more steroids,or antibiotics. Thanks to my Doctor for a new life

    • Sarah February 26, 2015, 12:42 pm

      please tell me more!

  10. bonnie wegener November 27, 2014, 12:08 am

    Send study information on how many people were in the study & how mow many people developed cancer

  11. Hannah November 9, 2014, 10:43 am

    My mom has taken Forteo for 18 months now and plans to finish to the two year limit. She has not had any major side effects and is wondering if there’s a way to take a maintenance dose past the 2 years. Her reason for choosing to take Forteo in spite of the risks was very well researched as she is an CRNA/RN. She opted to give up her other medications and their potential side effects for this one because she has had 3 spontaneous fractures of vertebrae and ribs from simply bending over. She is a care taker for my father and is a very active 77 year old. She has not had any further fractures and feels she would rather take the medicine than live Life as an invalid. The incidence of sarcoma is rare and everyone reacts to medicine differently. While this may not be for everyone, It is working well for her. I’m thankful she’s been able to retain her quality of life and has not had to slow down or live in fear of daily life.

    • headdr23 November 10, 2014, 10:45 pm

      I have been taking forteo for over a year and a half and have yet to ever experience a side effect. I am not taking the drug for complete osteoporosis reasons, but rather due to a bone disease called hypophasphatasia – causes me to have numerous bone fractures (you can look it up if interested but to long & detailed to get into). There is no cure for my disease and this has been a Godsend in my experience. I got no new fractures while taking the drug. I realize all medications come with risks but IMO its been worth it.

  12. Greg Pospiel October 22, 2014, 9:08 am

    There’s a list of literally thousands of drugs that have been banned due to their deadly side effects. Why take a chance with a drug that will likely end up on that list in a few years. My father who is 85 was just prescribed this drug and the more I research it, the scarier it gets. According to Dr Joel Furhman and Dr Amy Lanou and researcher, Michael Castelman among others the best way to treat Osteoporosis is through a healthier plant based diet and weight bearing exercises with no seed effects but as long as there is money to be made by pharmaceutical companies and doctors prescribing these drugs; this nonsense will probably continue…

    • Helen November 21, 2014, 4:27 pm

      For those who do NOT have a problem with multiple fractures without major trauma you don’t understand how painful a vertebral fracture is! As others have said, my vertebral bodies sustained anterior compression fractures with as little as stepping off a 3 inch curb. These fractures really hurt! And nothing can be done to stabilize the fracture such as putting your wrist in a cast. No you are condemned to Jewett Braces that are incredibly uncomfortable and you STILL hurt.

      Ortho surgeons are unable to fuse or do other surgeries because of the fragility of the bones. My last rib fractures came from radiation therapy for breast cancer. I still have severe pain after one year.

      So Yeah! I will take a rare possibility of osteosarcoma over ANOTHER fracture.

      Also falls have increased by 50% over the last year in the USA. Fracturing one’s hip may put you on a course of bedrest, further bone loss, and the possibilities of blood clots and pneumonia…then at times death.

      Fractures ARE a big deal in us older people. I am glad that I am taking Forteo. I am a widow who lives by myself with a service dog…I just CAN’T suffer another fracture!

      And the subq injections are no big deal! It uses a 33 gauge 3/16th inch needle..the diameter of a few hairs. I don’t even feel the needle.

      • Mahendra March 27, 2015, 10:09 am

        Pls advise that at the age of 44, taking teripartide is good or not. I have multiple fracture in my spine, one shoulder dislocation and some small fractures at other parts of the body. I am on taylors brace since last one years. doctors has advised me Terefrack with calcium and vitaminin D. Pls advise

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA October 23, 2014, 12:10 pm

      I couldn’t agree more, Greg!

      • Ron March 25, 2015, 8:11 pm

        I should add a few points that appear to have been missed. I was diagnosed with Osteoporosis and I’m 48 year old male, with bone density T-Scores as low as -3.7 in my Femur’s, pelvis, and spine. Prior to the break, I was i the gym 4 times a week, and did a lot of weight lifting and had for 20 years (my loss was due to hypogonadotropic hypogonadism). I had stress fractures throughout my femur’s, pelvis, lower spine, and ankles, with some particularly bad fractures in the femoral necks on both sides and in both ankles. I also had a long history of fractures in my ribs. I was essentially unable to walk and I’m not even 50. Something as simple as rolling over in bed was excruciating and could easily result in a fracture. Standing up would take about 60 seconds of horrible pain, and then walking would take another 30 seconds or so of very small steps until my legs and hips would bear the weight. I was prescribed Forteo, The results have been nothing short of miraculous so far. Within 2 weeks I was able to walk again with some pain, and the fractures in my ankles appear to have begun healing when a year had seen no improvement at all. I was able to remove my ankle boot after 2 weeks. At 3 weeks I was able to roll over in bed relatively pain free, but with some soreness still evident. The people in here aghast that someone would risk cancer should consider the pain involved. Sometimes the end does justify the means. I was told that due to the location of some of my fractures, a simple fall could fracture my femoral necks and pelvis, and I would have hip replacement before I was 50. After 3 weeks I could stand without pain, and walk for much longer distances with no pain, although longer starts to cause some ache. I’m hoping that resolves as my bone strength improves.

        Now, on to some additional info. I did some pretty lengthy research on this drug, and it is true it causes cancer in mice, but some information seems to be missing here. The incidence of tumors in mice was noted only where there was new bone growth. That’s important because a mouse never stops growing bone. A human’s bones grow to a certain size and then they are relatively stable for the remainder of your adult life. A mouse or rat’s bones continues to grow until death. The tumors were only evident on that newer growth in rats, where a human wouldn’t have that type of bone growth. As to the incidence of cancer, there have not been enough cases of cancer to indicate that the Forteo was even a causative factor. The cancer is so rare and the incidence of such cancer in humans remains rare, even on this drug, but it still received a black box warning to err on the side of safety. If you can recover via other means, then this may not be for you, but if your life is impacted the way mine was, it wasn’t even a consideration, and I refuse to do bisphosphonates.

        I’ve also seen comments that all bone growth is lost. I have not seen that to be the case in the studies I’ve read. They indicated that although there is some bone loss, it is actually smaller than the bisphosphonate bone loss after each drug was stopped. The longer lasting effects of bisphoshonates risks bones actually shattering due to the breakdown of the body’s natural ability to tear down old bone and replace it with new. Forteo simply produces new bone growth. biosphoshonates ‘disrupt’ the natural process that breaks down bone, causing new bone growth to simply pile onto the old bone growth. A ‘house built on sand’ applies here. For some it can cause brittle, almost crystalized bone to just shatter due to the weakened bone that should have long been torn down by the body.

        Forteo’s process is actually not ‘unknown’ as implied. It increase serum levels of calcium partially by bone reabsorption, BUT, with the intermittent injections, it hyper activates more osteoblast than osteoclasts, and osteoblasts are the essential engine in building new bone. As long as you have the raw materials, it works like gangbusters.

        As far as the cancer incidence, they had 2 cases of osteosarcoma in 10 years following it’s approval (it was approved in 2002). The incidence of cancer was so small, they could not say with any certainty that Forteo was a factor. Natural options are an excellent choice if you have that option, but when you get to a point where simply walking puts your long term health at risk of severe fractures, it should not be left out as a consideration.

        As to side effects, I’ve only seen mild aches for 2-3 hours every so often, usually about 3 hours after injection. They go away on their own.

        I am also now back at the gym, and lifting weights as my body allows. I also ensure I get plenty of Vitamin D3 (about 6000 iU a day) when I’m not out in the sun enough, and I have it checked regularly to ensure those levels don’t get too high. You cannot get enough Vitamin D through diet alone. Only supplements, or sunshine will provide enough. I also take 1200mg of calcium a day, broken down into two does since you can’t absorb much more than 600 mg in a dose. NOTE: You do have to be careful with calcium though as it can affect a huge range of medicines due to it’s ability to affect absorption. is an excellent source of information for interactions.

        As with all things, talk to your doctor before do any medication, or any homeopathic treatments. Sometimes you can do more harm than good. Be proactive. Research, research, and research some more, then have a real dialogue with your doctor. If your doc won’t speak with you at length, get another doctor that will.

  13. Barbara October 4, 2014, 3:55 pm

    I started taking Forteo. The first week I felt fine. Then I starting getting very constipated. Then it went to extreme tiredness, muscle weakness, a fuzzy brain.
    I was having trouble walking, and trying to cook dinner was a joke. I felt I had to
    hang on to things to keep upright. I was sleeping too much. Driving was hard, as
    I was afraid that I would fall asleep. I was actually afraid that I would go to sleep
    and not wake up. As soon as I stopped taking the drug I was back to myself!

  14. Angela R. September 20, 2014, 5:19 am

    CAUTION!!! MY MOTHER TOOK FORTEO FOR 2 MONTHS AND NOW HAS A HUGE, AGGRESSIVE SARCOMA ON HER THIGH, RIGHT WHERE SHE INJECTED FORTEO. She has never been ill, is 72, 120 pounds at 5’2″, and had NONE of the supposed RISK FACTORS. Her doctor did not tell her of this risk. PLEASE DO NOT TAKE FORTEO!!!

    • Helen November 21, 2014, 4:34 pm

      OK. This drug MAY cause OSTEO sarcoma. The Forteo probably has NOTHING to do with a sarcoma..big difference.
      She may coincidentally have a soft tissue tumor that had NOTHING to do with the injections.

      I’ve been in medicine long enough to understand cause and effect. It used to be whenever a woman (or man) developed breast cancer they would link it back to a bruise, hitting your breast on a corner of a table..etc. With enough clinical research we realized that the contusion had NOTHING to do with breast cancer. Read the clinical findings. Not anecdotal experiences.

  15. Hadar September 8, 2014, 1:41 pm

    My mother is a 54 year old woman with osteoporosis. After breaking her hip bone earlier this year, she was advised by her doctor to inject Forteo once a day for the next 18 months. Today was her first injection, and the side effects she described were.. bizarre.. nowhere to be found on the pamphlet that came with the drug (and of course her doctor was too busy to take her calls) so I’m asking you guys: did any of you experience severe nerve pain after taking Forteo? She described it as starting from her lowest vertebrae and advancing through her spine until her mid-back, starting approx. 15 minutes after the injection, and weakening until disappearing about an hour later. She has injected herself many times before so she probably did not just hit a nerve while giving herself the medication. Anyone? Thanks a lot

  16. Jane E. August 23, 2014, 11:32 pm

    I have had several fractures in my spine. I was on Fosamax for 2 years and was getting progressively worse. My rheumatologist recommended Forteo. I just finished my two years of it on 8/21/14. I am scheduled to have my BMD test this Thursday. I will let you know if it helped me. I’m not sure if I had any side effects from Forteo or from something else. I had extra anxiety (I’m an agoraphobic so I’m anxious anyway). I would have days where I was tired (I’m also 68 so that could be part of that). I’ve had a few days of depression but nothing too bad. As I understand it, after your first year on Forteo a BMD will not give you an accurate reading of what it is really doing. It can be very misleading. I just broke my little toe less than two weeks ago and it is healing faster than I ever expected. My doctor told me they give Forteo to patients who have broken bones as it helps them heal faster. I have to think that’s what went on with my toe. The bone cancer scares me a bit. I’ve already had cancer once. But laying in a home waiting for a broken hip to heal scares me also. Best of luck to all of you with osteoporosis!

    • Lora February 17, 2015, 2:02 pm

      My doctor wanted me to take Foreto for two years because of osteopenia – not osteoporosis- in my left hip. (None in right hip or spine). I’d rather risk a fracture than a deadly form of cancer.

      • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA February 17, 2015, 2:53 pm

        I couldn’t agree more, Lora!

    • Renee B November 4, 2014, 6:52 pm

      Jane E. – any update? How was your BMD testing? Do you think the treatment was worth it? Thanks

  17. Andrew Barovick August 1, 2014, 12:11 pm

    There have been a few instances in which Forteo caused Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS), or so the patients believe. Anyone know anything about this?

    • maa November 14, 2014, 9:32 am

      I had Guillain Barré syndrome shortly after starting Forteo this year?

      Have you heard anything?

  18. Anonymous May 14, 2014, 8:47 pm

    I was on Forteo for 4 and a half months in 2013. From start to finish, it was a nightmare. Severe asthenia (fatigue) from day one, sleeping in excess of 12 hours per night. Brain fog developed from the onset. Affected my memory, could not work while taking the drug. After 2.5 months, Forteo triggered onset of thrush and candida, followed by pelvic rash and burning that spread to welts and lesions on pelvic floor. It has taken nearly 6 months for the rash to subside. I stopped the drug for a couple of weeks while fighting the thrush and candida but doctor recommended trying to continue as long as I could. Eventually I advised my endocrinologist that the side effects were so severe that my quality of life had been impacted. One of the most disconcerting aspects of this situation, is that the endocrinologist did not have any idea how to treat the side effects, and 2 of the 3 OB/GYNs I saw were also ignorant of the drug or its effects. I am still suffering from extreme fatigue and a severely weakened immune system as a result of this drug. Would not recommend it to anyone. While some individuals appear to be tolerant of the drug, others are clearly not. My brain fog has been clearing up as I put myself on a full body homeopathic detox program. I am now following a mediteranean diet, with Vitamin D, K2, and dietary calcium intake. I wound up with calcium deposits in soft tissue as a result of Forteo and it is not clear when this will clear up.

    • Gigi November 3, 2014, 4:37 pm

      I am 60 years old and started Forteo in March 2014. I thought everything was going well, until I began to get weak and couldn’t cross the room without stopping to catch my breath. My weakness has increased to the point that showering has become tricky. I have dizziness, feel faint, very week, have yeast infections on my skin that won’t clear up, my hands are shaking so bad that I can hardly sign my name. I stopped taking Forteo about 10 days ago (it is now Nov. 3rd) and have seen no improvement in my health. My doctor has run a number of tests on me and finally is sending me to a cardiologist because some of my symptoms mimic heart failure. I’m at the point that I almost hope it is heart failure, because that can be treated and I have the possibility to return to my much more active self. This is horrible and I know in my heart that this is caused by the Forteo. Please don’t take Forteo. It can ruin your life.

      • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA November 4, 2014, 8:04 am

        Gigi, I am truly sorry to hear about your experience. I want to encourage you, though – your body was made for health, and if you want to get the Forteo out of your system faster, you might consider doing a cleanse like OsteoCleanse to give your recovery a “jump start.” Hang in there, and nurture your body with plenty of pure water, healthy Foundation Foods, and whatever exercise you’re comfortable with!

  19. Lynn May 12, 2014, 6:07 pm

    I am 63, began taking Forteo in Jan. 2013. I’ve had no side effects. I broke a finger in March 2013 and it healed faster after surgery than was predicted due to the Forteo. My doctor sees me every 6 months for bloodwork. I take calcium and Vitamin D-will have bone density test in Dec 2014. I did not want to take it in the beginning but my doctor said that my risk was very high, as I had already had a broken wrist and small break in my lower back. No one mentioned that the manufacturer will call periodically to monitor all side effects. I signed up for that the first year. They are VERY thorough in helping the patient. Medicine does have a lot of unknowns. That is why they call it “practicing” medicine. Everyone is different, what works for one will not work for another. Deciding if the risks are worth it is what is important. When my doctor told me that someone else would have to take care of my handicapped daughter for 6 months if I broke a hip made me decide to take the injections. Sometimes the circumstances in our lives make the decision for us. Please keep in mind that ALL Medications we take can have terrible side effects for some people. Thanks to all who shared their stories. I wish you all the best because it’s not fun making these decisions!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA May 13, 2014, 11:49 am

      I am glad you’re doing your research, Lynn, and are comfortable with your health decisions. :)

  20. jane broderick February 25, 2014, 2:13 pm

    My STUPID Dr, gave me Forteo for 2 years. Each and every day after injection I hung over the toilet , like a Chemo patient. My first injection put me in the ER with a very rapid heart rate, vomiting, and horrible sick feeling, sweating, etc. He told me it was ALL in my head ? Really ? I would love to sue him!!!!! For what he put me through. After I finished 2 years of Forteo, the dexa scan was done, it did NOT help at all ! These drug companies are so crooked and what they put patients through ! Now years later, I am suffering with all this bone/muscle pain, autoimmune diseases, and I blame FORTEO ! think twice before you even think about using this HORRIFIC drug !!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA April 17, 2014, 8:36 am

      I am so sorry you had that experience, Jane! I am glad that you now know you do not have to take any drug that you do not want to. It’s your health and your body – your doctor is not the one who suffers any side effects…YOU do! Now that you’re off Forteo, your body can heal and your bones can build themselves naturally. :) I am glad you found this Save Our Bones community!

  21. Mike February 2, 2014, 7:08 pm

    Forteo is a good drug. Using now for nonunion. The rats in cancer study were poor models for humans and intensive tracking of humans has turned up nothing. Same with monkey tests. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing. Listen to your doctors, not bloggers.

    • Mike March 10, 2014, 12:24 am

      Update: Have been taking Forteo for six weeks. A hip fracture caused by a bicycle crash was only 30 percent healed after four months. The hip was painful, particularly with full load bearing (standing on one keg). Not only can I stand on the injured leg w/o pain, I spent the weekend running around theme parks. Limp is gone. This drug has incredible potential for bone nonunion and speeding up fracture healing.

    • jane broderick February 25, 2014, 2:15 pm

      Mike, Are you kidding ? Some Doctors do not know the first thing about Drugs, the PHARMACIST’s are the ones to listen to !

  22. Cindy January 2, 2014, 9:18 pm

    Comment: 2 Jan 2014 – My Doctor put me on Forteo in January 2004 after much consideration. I did the injections for 18 months. The Doctor told me I could never take it again after that, even though it was recommended for two years. It was a desperate attempt to put some of my bone mass back. My Dexxa scans showed I could expect a broken bone anytime. I gained about 30% of my bone mass back!! I do continue to take calcium. I did not experience any side effects. My recent Dexxa scan Sept 2013 shows my bone mass has still remained stable since 2005. I did not know about the bone cancer aspect of the drug when I was taking it. I chose to take it for two reasons. 1. My Mother suffered with severe osteoporosis for 30 years before passing. I was my Mother’s caretaker for 20 of those years. 2. In 2002 I became my husband’s caretaker. I offer no answers for others. I do have a question. Does Forteo keep working long years after finishing injections? It seems it might considering what others have said. What have others experienced? Thanks for letting me have my say.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA January 4, 2014, 8:14 am

      Hi Cindy,
      Great news about getting 30% of your bone mass back!
      I do understand your concerns about the Forteo staying in your system after finishing the injections. According to a comprehensive data sheet on Forteo, the resorption and elimination of teriparatide (Forteo) are quite fast (which is why the injections are daily), and it is not likely to accumulate in bone or other tissue. You can read the entire data sheet at this link:

  23. Gayna Ryan December 3, 2013, 1:02 am

    My mother has been taking Forteo app. 3 months. Has anyone had a memory problem from this drug? It has come on very fast and severe and we are trying to figure out why this is happening. She was fine before the drug and I don’t know if the drug is the problem..stumped

    • Sam December 12, 2013, 2:49 pm

      Girl friends 90 year old mom took it for a month and all sorts of mental problems ensued. Taken off Forteo at 1 month ( 1 month ago ) she IS doing better.

      The doc said it was the excess calcium – ( and I wonder why and what do you expect from a 90 year old? Why why subject someone at such an advanced age to all the drama of Forteo? And agreed, why trade potential bone fractures for potential cancer? As wee, All the data shows people at 90 have the largest percentage of reactions by any age group – maybe the doctors get a kick back?

  24. Mary November 26, 2013, 12:06 am

    My mother took Forteo for two years. She has now been off of it for about 6 months. What we have discovered in that time is that it not only lays down new bone it also will form bone spurs, and kidney stones. She is 85 years old and never had any problem with kidney stones. We have no history of kidney stones in the family. She was recently admitted to the hospital and discovered a 6-7 mm kidney stone. Most kidney stones are between 2-3 mm. She has a boulder which she will need surgery to get rid of. We can only attribute the stone to Forteo. Our doctor never discussed this possibility with us. If we would have known this side effect we would have done more research on this drug. I am not sure that the “cure” was worth the side effect.

  25. Charlaine November 21, 2013, 5:02 pm


    I à ma french canadian ( so excuse me if my english is not as well it shoud ne…). My doctor suggestion me to use forteo cause i have problem to control calcium in my blood. I do hypocalcemia. The thing is that i would use forteo longer than 2 years’s as recommended, it would be for the rest of my Life. I am very anxious cause the risk of cancer bones. Also, my mother as myeloma multiple, i Wonder if the risk would be stonger for me. If you have any answer just let me know !

  26. Helena October 28, 2013, 8:45 am

    I started Forteo a few weeks ago, I am a 35 year old female who is taking it post spinal fusion for a fractured vertebrae with spinal instability after an injury. I am taking Forteo to encourage bone growth for the fusion. I have mild osteopenia in my hips, as well as a rare genetic condition that effects my collagen. Essentially, in layman’s terms I make defective collagen and collagen is an important part of bone formation. I had a lumbar fracture, and during surgery my physician noted that that bone was slightly soft – common with my condition. My mother and I are both nurses and discussed the pros and cons of the medication before I started it, additionally I discussed it with a couple of my physicians. I made the decision to take Forteo. I will only be doing a short course of it, and considering the risks of not having a positive outcome of my fusion should I not form a solid fusion the benefits outweighed the risks. For me the injections are not a big deal, no different than a diabetic really. The needle is tiny, and painless. I can not speak to joint pain as my genetic condition causes widespread joint pain. I haven’t noticed any side effects outside of it making me sleepy the first few days I took it. Overall I am confident in my decision and I am thrilled that there is a medication that encourages bone growth given my current post surgical status, and risks of a poor fusion.

  27. Patricia October 8, 2013, 2:47 pm

    This week I should be starting my third round of Forteo. I’ve been very tired since starting and have cramps in my legs off and on. I have had 2back surgeries 3yrs ago. I have back pain. Last week I started with horrible, horrible pains in my back. I need assistance in getting up from bed or chair. I think this grabbing severe pain is muscular. Never had it before. I stopped Forteo on Saturday. I’ll see my Dr. next week. Has anyone had this problem or other muscular problems? I don’t think I’ll be goin back on this drug.

  28. Terri Leffler August 23, 2013, 1:30 pm

    I was just diagnosed with osteoporosis , what is the natural way of treatment ?

  29. Mary Sheets July 29, 2013, 10:01 am

    I have been using Forteo for 3 months. The first month i experienced joint and muscle pain in the 3rd and 4th weeks. Since then I have not experiencied any pain outside my usual aches. I did have a dental implant done and my periodontist noted that bome had grown over the implant during the 4 month waiting period. I am taking Forteo because of previous bone lose in my jaw. I now have osteporosis in the neck of my hip that continued to progress with calcium and D use. I have never used bisphosphomates because of the bone loss in jaw.
    I am guilty of lack of regular exercise. When i do vigorous exercise i have a two day recovery time. I am 59 years old 5’4″ and 144 lbs. I do not have any other health problems except for skin cancer removals due to over exposure to the sun as a youth.
    I think I should be monitored more closely by my doctor while using this drug.

  30. Sandra Hardy June 4, 2013, 6:24 pm

    I have been using Forteo for almost 2 years and my bones have gotten much worse. I want to stop the Forteo but my doctor won’t hear of it. Said I have to take it until mid September to get the full effects. Before taking it I had broken both collar bones, left worst and right hip. Since on Forteo I now have osteoporosis in my lower spine, right forearm and left thigh bone. This meds has only made it worse. On the Forteo site it says that if your bones worsen to stop taking it immediately.

    • Jim Evans August 25, 2013, 7:11 pm

      I broke my right hip at 43 years old. That’s when they discovered severe osteoporosis. I was on Fosamax for 12 years, when I broke left hip. I was taken off Fosamax, and put on Forteo. I’ve been on Forteo for 14 months. The bone density scan done two months ago showed that my T Score in my lumbar spine had dropped from minus 3.1 to minus 3.7 during that first year of Forteo, yet the doctor tells me to continue the injections….

      • Darlene February 18, 2015, 2:25 pm

        In my opinion, you both should seek new physicians. Sounds like the doctors may be “bought” by the perks they are receiving by placing patients on forteo and other drugs for the “companies studies”.
        I have a friend who worked “the other side”, and he said doctors “win” cruises and other trips for pushing their new pills, thereby using you in the blind study. You are the only one blind to that fact.
        IF you are having any doubts about your doctors motive, seek care elsewhere asap!! Doctors are pretty easy to replace now-a-days.

  31. Sandra Long April 25, 2013, 5:38 pm

    First and most importantly I would like for everyone making comment here to be assured that I believe in freedom of choice. Having said that, please let me share with you what has happened to my Mother since her doctor put her on Forteo. Although it is very expensive, she able to acquire this drug for free because of being on a fixed income. Anyway, since taking this drug she has had more fractures, aches and pains and now the doctor is telling her that her heart is of a concern. (Heart disease does not run in our family, that is, not until the doctors start prescribing pharmaceuticals.) Further, when she fell and broke her arm three years ago, she had been taking some other osteoporosis drug. Even though she was put on Forteo, her arm looks no different than the day she broke it. When she faithfully took Fosamax, I was taking her to the hospital every six months to a year for a procedure to put medication on the inside of her esophagus at the opening to her stomach. So, now y’all tell me . . . are these drugs worth all that? And now I ave read that this Forteo can cause bone cancer?? So, then isn’t Forteo an oxymoron? Will I take these drugs????? I think not! TY for letting me share. :)

    • tony hauptman April 20, 2014, 5:37 pm

      there is a big picture most people are missing, and that is that drug companies are big businness in the u.s. more than anywhere. the u.s. is #1 in the world in spending in health care, yet is like #20 in actual care. so that tells you the u.s. is doing something wrong. You are lucky to find a SMART doctor who actually gives a damm about you and not his income, those are few and far between.

  32. Mary April 21, 2013, 11:23 pm

    Should I spend the $ (which I don’t have) on it? My mom had amazing results fro this med.. I am going down the same road and DO NOT want to suffer as she did before she received Forteo – but I don’t have the requisite $10,000.00. I am otherwise a young 54 year old. My daughter is 10 years old. What should I do?

    • J December 15, 2013, 9:25 pm

      Hi. To respond to your question, please note that all pharmaceutical companies offer financial assistance for their expensive medications. All you have to do is ASK. If you qualify, they could pay up to 100% of your treatment as long as you need it.
      Try, worth a shot. Most people qualify for at least 50% coverage.

    • John April 25, 2013, 12:10 pm

      If you have severe osteoporosis, you need to look at your risk factors for vertebral fracture or hip fracture. These both come with extreme costs associated with surgical repair and after care. The cost of Forteo is a small price to pay considering the fractures it prevents.

  33. linda sickora April 17, 2013, 1:28 pm

    i am to begin forteo treatments on friday. my concern is that i have both myasthenia gravis and asthma. how will this affect me or should i not even think of starting forteo injections?

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA April 17, 2013, 7:23 pm

      Linda, your health is in your hands – the decision is up to you! Armed with information from this site, you are free to choose whatever you think is best for your body. The important thing to remember is that you do not have to take Forteo – you do have a choice! :)

  34. mary ann March 16, 2013, 10:22 pm

    i am 80, been on forteo for 7 months. i have alot of aches and pains but i had them before forteo. i will continue forteo and hope that no more pains occur. if they do i will deal with it.

  35. Pilar March 7, 2013, 7:33 pm

    Well, I am a 58 year old, I was diagnosed with osteoporosis back in 2002, my primary doctor recomended Foxamas, took it 2 years, the disease didn’t improved or got worse, then I think took actonel for another 2 years, no results, not getting better or getting worse. Then in 2009 I was offered Forteo. Something very important my primary and I we had a very trusthful relationship. She laid all the side effects of forteo but also maybe the benefits. So we weight in was was the best route for me, and we choose to go for Forteo. I was very pro-active so I find out that you have to have a thyroid test done, and a parathyroid which the results shown me that it was low with the hormones.My treatment went by, my result for the oesteoporosis shown an improvement in 2011 when I finished it. I didn’t have any side effect knock on wood, and I really would like to go back with Forteo, the reason being is that if you have any side effects you can stop the treatment right there. There is other treatments that they give you one injection per year and what happens if really you get sick with it? Since the other medication didn’work on me I really would like to find a way to go back with forteo. I haven’t been taking forteo almost for 2 years know and the results of my last test show that again the disease is not getting worst.

  36. Cecile February 20, 2013, 12:57 pm

    My good friend, Anne, has been taking Forteo for less than a month. She is only 50 but just two days ago she suffered an aneurism and nearly died!!! She has never had anything like high blood pressure, etal. yet her bpressure went up to 170 over 90. Anne is a very slight, underweight woman. My immediate thought was this had something to do with Forteo. Anybody know anything on this? Thanks

    • Dee Allison October 9, 2014, 5:07 pm

      Re BP: this med can cause swift bp changes with change in position. I am always the canary in the coal mine, and have had almost every side effect. I have autoimmune disease and chmical sensitivities. I fear this drug is not for me. To top off the headaches, the entire days of severe nausea, the diarrhea…80 lbs now, yesterday my bp began spiking…158/?? Can’t recall the bottom no….along w terrible headache. My cardio tells me that if my bp is over 100 Systolic at bedtime, am to take extra half of bp med. the last time I was 158/ I was in an ambulance, going to rule out MI. (hrt attack).good luck, all, and thanks.

  37. Vivian Goldschmidt, MA February 5, 2013, 4:24 pm

    Remember, density tests do not measure tensile strength or flexibility. :) That’s more important in preventing fractures than high density scores. Mainstream medicine focuses so much on density because it needs numbers (i.e. fixed parameters) to prescribe drugs, so most doctors follow the same protocol.

    While density is an indicator of bone metabolism, the main focus of bone health is simply to prevent fractures, and less dense but healthy and renewed bones have better tensile strength than thicker, denser, older bones.

    I explain this in detail in the Save Our Bones program! :)

  38. John H. Douglas January 19, 2013, 5:01 pm

    Generally speaking Forteo is supposed to be taken for 18m months to two years. I took itg for ten months and got curious as to what effect it was having on bone dxdensity.i read and was told that an improvewment of 1 to 2% is expecteed after two years.Whdn i asked for a bone density test after 10 months i wsaS ALMOSYT LAUGHED AT..AFTER all IT TAKES two years to even see the slightest improvement,AND MEDICAREwill not pay for a test done in less than two years because the Forteo would not have had a chance to work in that short a period of time.
    eI told them i would pay for the test myself and insisted on taking it.
    I took he test and found that bone density had improved not one or two% but 22%!!!!!!!i went from severe Osteoporosis to Osteopena.

    Granted i exercised daily and Drank and ate DAIRY PRODUCTS but 22% in 8 MONTHS!!!

    • Jim October 1, 2013, 3:42 pm

      I am 70 year old male and my endo doc wants me to start with Forteo in November. I have severe ostop. in my hip and spine….no other medical problems so far…… Your comment almost seems “to good to be true.” I have been excersising and taking loads of vit. and mineral suppliments and eating dairy for the first time in 30 years since i was told I have osteop 9 months ago. All side and lower back pains are gone now (two rib bones were broken). My vit D and parathyroid numbers are all in the normal range now. I wonder if I should take the drug at all. {Please comment……

    • timi fl July 1, 2013, 6:19 pm

      hi hi so i have been reading most comments about forteo and does any body have the bone creaking ?

      I feel and i hear sounds like my bones cracking from all over my body. tips of toes to up and out to fingers and up to the shoulders and neck with a few aches in my skull. these are all random. but sometimes intense enough to wake me.

      i have very tired spells, and then i can go a couple days with no problems what so ever.

      my bone scan was 3.4 or 4.3 approx. and it must come up to qualify for lung transplant.

      i lost most of my bone density in one year probably due to the prednizone for the lung problems my lungs were ok in jan 12 and oct 12 to much osteopourus to qualify

      I thought forteo was the only bone building drug. I thought i was told that fosomax and all the others that we have all been on were medications to prevent bone loss. but could not build bone once it was lost.

      i eat lots of green vegetables cheese beef chicken water

      I would like to hear what other people’s experiences have been
      Thanks and have a Great Day. Timi

      • Dee September 27, 2013, 1:17 am

        Hi Timi,

        I’ve been on Forteo for two months now and also experience the bone creaking and cracking. When I first start with a fresh batch at the beginning of each month I experience 3days of severe headaches and fatigue and joint stiffness. The rest of the month tends to fluctuate with days of normality and days of fatigue. My kidneys seem to be working overtime and I have to urinate frequently. This can vary with the odd day being so extreme tha I don’t know where all the water is coming from and I feel really dehydrated. I’ve partially solved that problem by mixing coconut juice with the water I drink. I live a very healthy diet with lots of fresh vegetables and fish, minimized the sugar and other toxic substances out of my diet and I think it’s this that’s helping me. Foreo is my last hope since nothing else has helped so I’m determined to continue.

        • Dee August 17, 2014, 4:06 am

          It’s now 12months since I started with Forteo. I found I had to stop the calcium supplements to reduce the frequency problem. My dexa scan showed an improvement in my spine from -3.7 to -3.1 and slightly less improvement in the hip. However my wrist has worsened to -4. Will continue for final 6 months but a bit disappointed by these results, was hoping for more. It’s the only osteo medication thatI’ve been able to tolerate.

          • cathy November 19, 2014, 11:02 am

            6 months on and feel all the same effects, tired!!!
            headaches, creaking am praying this works, age 61, legs hurt every day, how did your final come out? please let me know

  39. marymyers January 2, 2013, 2:40 am

    It has been 1 year since I had forteo…for 2 years I had the shots every day..I had no bad reaction during that time and my bone scan showed a 22 percent improvement .I had had no luck with the medications I had taken for several years I am very grateful for my Dr prescribing forteo Mary

  40. Dale December 18, 2012, 9:59 am

    I used Forteo for 2 years. My T score for my hips went from -3.4 to -2.8
    so the drug seemed to increase bone during that time. Because of a problem with reflux— I cannot take any other type of osteoporosis medication orally and I did not want an infusion drug. Forteo was my only choice.

  41. Bettyanne December 17, 2012, 5:30 pm

    OK, I’ve been on Actonel for as long as I’m allowed (4.5 years), Reclast for 2 years and Forteo for 2 years. According to my doctor the only two things left for me to go on are Evista or Prolia because she will not recommend I return to any of the others I’ve tried. Since my T scores have continued to look bad (now – 3.4), what are my other options? Can I just eat right, take calcium, etc. without fear of further deterioration?

  42. Kathy December 17, 2012, 9:59 am

    I have been taking Forteo for 6 weeks. Side effects have started such as muscle cramping and numbness around my mouth. This is such a highly recommended drug for the severe osteoporosis I have, but these side effects scare me. I am also a cancer survivor and the warnings about cancer this drug can cause is very concerning to me. Has anyone else had these side effects?

    • Donna February 8, 2013, 9:39 am

      I too am a cancer survivor, and have had the same side effects as you…muscle cramps, pain behind knees and knee joints. I also got extemely itchy after taking Forteo after 6 weeks. By 2 months I was so itchy I couldn’t even sleep. Pharmacist and dr, said to stop for a few day…the itchy part stopped alost immediately, but the joint pain lingered. So I stopped for 2 months! Now I face the delemia…do I take it again and face joint pain, itchy nights and days, and possibly cancer? Or do I give it the old “college try” just one more time? My numbers were also -3.4 Any input would be appreciated

    • chana December 30, 2012, 9:38 pm

      Decided against Forteo because of “black box” and went on Prolia. I hardly felt the pinprick in my arm and have had no negative reaction. Continuing to drink 3 glasses of milk per day. FYI

      • John January 8, 2013, 5:40 pm

        I should also note that the black box warning refers to rats, which have VERY different bones than humans, and even the rats had no problems when given normal human doses…read the warning…osteosarcoma was dependant on dose and duration…not seen in rats until 3 to 60 TIMES the normal human dose….suprised osteosarcoma is the only thing they got at those levels…lastly, rats were injected with forteo which is a human hormone.

        • BadToTheBone April 14, 2013, 8:50 pm

          This is a great point and often missed in the scaremongering.

          What is even more problematic is that rat bones grow over the course of their life while humans do not. The high levels of Forteo given to them resulted in a small percentage of rats getting cancer in only those new growth areas at the ends of the rat’s bones.

          I was on Forteo for a year and had 12% increase in bone density but it stopped working after that.

      • John January 8, 2013, 5:26 pm

        Prolia works by turning off a natural process of the body…bone turnover…long term effects of this can include additional fractures. BMD or bone hardness is only one contributing factor to overall bone strength…the most important factor is bone quality. Prolia can be a good option only after bone quality is addressed.

  43. Elizabeth December 13, 2012, 1:12 pm

    I have just completed 2 years on FORTEO, and my bone scan reveals no improvement in my bone density. Having paid approx. $25,000 of my own money on the understanding from the doctor that my body would receive a “real boost” from taking this expensive medication, I feel very annoyed and disappointed. Annoyed because I would never have agreed to taking FORTEO on the basis that it ‘might work’. The story line given to me 2 years ago by the doctor, contradicts in every respect the explanation offered this week after my bone density results. I was told that FORTEO does not in fact have an effect on bone density, but rather strengthens the bone itself. However, there is absolutely no evidence to support such a claim. As of this week, I am told by the same doctor, that there is no test to the effectiveness of this very expensive medication. It is all guess work – very expensive guess work.

    • John January 8, 2013, 5:09 pm

      Forteo forms new bone as collagen… If your looking for a BMD increase, you must have proper vit-D levels and take supplemental calcium.

  44. Katie Lefebvre December 12, 2012, 2:00 pm

    My Dr. has suggested that I start Forteo & I’m having a difficult time in deciding. I have had an upper arm fracture and there isn’t any change with the aclasta injections that I’ve had two times.
    Help !

    • John January 8, 2013, 5:20 pm

      Understand that all osteoporsis drugs other than Forteo, have a warning stating that they can actually inhibit or slow fracture healing…just FYI.

  45. Jason Welisch December 9, 2012, 2:28 pm

    I am looking for testimonials from people who have been prescribed teriparatide forteo for osteoporosis and knee bone degeneration.

    • connie January 18, 2013, 6:59 pm

      I was on Forteo 2002-2004 (2 years which is the maximum). My t-score did improve while I was on the injections. Prior to that I hadn’t had improvement with any other drugs. I didn’t have any side effects at the time. However, in 2008 I developed Hypothyroidism. I have no family history of this, and I don’t know if it could be related to the forteo or not…. Now I have a large mass in my thyroid. I just had an ultrasound today so I don’t even have the Doctor report yet. Again, I don’t know if it could be a side effect or not.

  46. Barry Dorning December 5, 2012, 5:50 am

    So true! Just love that humour!

  47. Joyce November 28, 2012, 8:36 pm

    I turned 70 this year. I had been on fosamax for 15+ years. My Gyn said my bones would be ok with this. I feel I should not have taken it so long. I was active (did Zumba) and tripped over my dog August 4 and fractured my hip. Bad break with the ball being fractured. The Dr put 3 screws in since it was in place. He wanted me to do Forteo because it helped bone to heal. I am on my 3rd round of shots and I am quitting. i have had so much pain I find it difficult to walk. I want to get my life back to normal and I feel Forteo bringing me down. Before this I was active and now I hurt all over. By the way my bone density of my hips looked good and showed osetopenia in my back.

  48. Harlee Jenkins November 21, 2012, 11:38 am

    I’m 59 yrs young, hx of osteoporosis,with 3yrs on Fosamax and continued loss of bone density. I was put on Forteo last year and I have had NO…as in ZERO side effects or complications from this “horrible secret agent” med! I’ve not had another Dexa scan yet, because of $$, but I have had 5 major falls in the past 6mos (cause by my loss of sight and “ghosting” vision in my sighted eye)…the last 2 falls in the past week…one off a step ladder down 6 stairs onto a concrete porch. NO FRACTURES TO REPORT!, so the Forteo must be doing somehing positive for me! I ABSOLUTELY WILL CONTINUE TAKING THE FORTEO FOR NOTHER FULL YEAR! I am healthy, happy and walk daily for 10K steps, and watch a toddler and a newborn 4 days/week. I can only share MY outcome, but after lots of research, and MANY prior fractures throughout my active life (10+), I continue as a happy Forteo user!

    • Carol July 25, 2014, 3:14 am

      I am 71 with severs osteoporosis. I have been on Forteo for three and a half months. Last week I tripped and fell on my back…..and nothing was broken!! I am very pleased about this.

      • Marlin October 19, 2014, 10:23 pm

        I am 55. On Sept 2013 Dr told me I have osteoporosis an a really high risk of fracture. my to score is -3.4 I refused to take medication since I am afraid of the side effects, I have been taking calico AlgaeCal, strontium and walking. I was helping my daughter in her apt and fell down 3 times, also I felt down in my bath and nothing breake. I never have a breake bone in my life. And I do no take medicaments. Now my Dr told me that I need to take forteo for the Hight risk since I. Did no taking other drugs. I am really undicided if I take it or not. The only thing I am doing is walking and taking my calcium, eating better, everything that improve bones is the only thing I ate, I neend to wait till Sept 2015 for my next Dexa. I would let you all know if with exercise and calcium and eating the right stuff is enough, if not I will start forteo. But a least I want to take the risk of getting better without the risk of getting cancer or other health problems due to the medicaments. I am really scare, but at the same time say to my self, my mother have osteoporosis felt down many times and never fracture a bone why it should happen to me? It is not God how will know what happen. No the doctors?

  49. Faye November 15, 2012, 8:42 pm

    Four years ago I began FORTEO injections. After a month my body begain to hurt all over, then came the upset stomach, after 6 months I carried a paper bag all the time because I gagged so bad. AT Seven months I quit. I made about 5 calls to Lilly at this time. All they did was ask me all kinds of questions, each time the same questions. I could not get any answers from them. Before starting forteo my kidneys were fine, 3 months after I stopped I still had upset stomach and passed out 3 times. Had doctor do enascope and blood work. My HGB was 9.6 and other blood work showed Kidney Failure. Since, I have go for injections, every 4 – 6 weeks to keep my blood count up to 11. IS THERE ANY ONE ELSE OUT THERE THAT MAY HAVE GOTTEN KIDNEY DISEASE TOO FROM FORTEO ???? PS my bone density never changed in 7 months.

    • John January 8, 2013, 5:30 pm

      The half life of Forteo is less than an hour. Any lasting nausea is usually caused by the anxiety of injecting something into your body. Understand that forteo is biologically identical to the first 34 amino acids of the PTH your body produces naturally.

      • Carry November 23, 2014, 2:12 pm

        John what is your experience with Forteo? Do you prescribe it?

  50. Dennis October 26, 2012, 8:47 am

    What are your thought about Magnesium Infusion™ is a ‘Pharmaceutical Grade’ Magnesium Chloride Hexahydrate derived using a critical extraction method from Dead Sea Minerals
    This is a spray that you spray your skin with to improve your bone health they claim that magnesium is need to move calcium from tissue to your bones. This spray is found at Nature City Products


    • chanapollack January 30, 2013, 2:10 pm

      This sounds like witch doctor medicine–

      • Lisa April 25, 2013, 6:22 pm

        Witch Doctor medicine? How absurd! The magnesium works! Do your research.
        You think it makes sense to fix a mineral or vitamin deficiency with a drug instead of with vitimins and minerals, which all work together inside your body to give back what it lost, causing the condition in the first place? That’s insane.

  51. Nicole Jean October 8, 2012, 12:13 pm

    What is the best alternative to Forteau? I can’t spend another winter afraid I will slip, fall, and end up with several broken bones. The doc keeps pushing the Forteau. I would like an option, something to compare it to.

    • Angela May 28, 2013, 2:41 pm

      My mother who has broken her hip. Now has broken her clavicle and ribs. The doctor wants her to take Forteo. She also has Croans diesease

    • Wanda Drake January 10, 2013, 1:29 am

      Every one take my advise don’t ever take Forteo i took it 1 year now it has been 3 years. July 2012 i got 1 fracture in my right foot and my lower back.In September 2012 both feet started hurting at the same time.October the MRI showed 10 fractures in my right foot the fracture in July did not heal my left foot i had 8 fractures in it.I had 6 fractures in my lower spine,memory loss and weight loss.I can’t walk 5 feet without more fractures.I do have osteoporosis after the sever pain i have had i will never take anything for it again.

    • Pat Skipper November 14, 2012, 9:55 pm

      I have been on forteo for about 8 weeks now and my pains are getting worse each day. So much that tomorrow at my GP’s office I am going to tell him that I am coming off this terrible drug and not going to see my specialist anymore. I have severe bone loss but at 68 I would rather risk a fracture then continue taking this drug, maybe it would be worth it if I were much younger, but I promise you the pain is so bad and I have enough to deal with pain due to bone spurs in my neck and surgeries in my neck and back…Just saying it is not worth it to me as of tomorrow I hope to stop destroying my body with Forteo….

  52. Harold Kinney September 29, 2012, 8:39 pm

    Are these adverse events being reported? Your doctor should contact the Lilly Pharmacovigilance Department at 1-800-Lilly-RX (800-545-5979).
    The website is:

  53. Steven Bidelman September 28, 2012, 6:15 pm

    I have been to the Save Our Bones site before. On behalf of my wife, whom is 59 years old, I need to tell this story. Please be patient.


    She has had about everything imaginable happen to her during the 12+ years we have been happily married. She lost her spleen due due to a complication of surgery in 2003, she suffered loss of vision due to Optical neuropathy in 2001. In 2010 was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Thankfully she survived all the horrible chemo, and radiation, and underwent a 7.5 hour surgery, in 2011, where 80% of her pancreas was removed, along with the remnants of the cancer. She is cancer free. But was also diagnosed sometime in 2010, with severe osteoporosis.

    1st she was put on Fosamax, which caused her to neck to hurt and indigestion. The Dr. said not to take it because of the reaction. Whatever other alternatives there were, she could not do, due to one or another contradictions with other health problems or conflicting medications. Which brought her to the Forteo choice. We were even given a grant for the $2000 worth of meds still in our fridge.

    The truth: Wednesday Sept 26th, 2012 in a instructor led classroom, she, along with others administered their first shots. The nurse/instructor told them that if they were going to have an adverse reaction, they would know in 10 minutes or so. After 15 mins, everyone left, apparently nobody had problems. HOWEVER, after about 5 minutes more when Maggie (my wife) went downstairs to wait for her ride, she was overcome by what she can only describe as the back of her head wanted to explode, this coming in waves , like birth contractions. Followed by the same intense and unbearable pain, in her calves. Luckily, this site is located near both our local hospital, and a walk-in clinic. She got the nurse within 5 minutes and went to the clinic. The doctor she recants, sort of took this in stride and he looked up some info on his iPad, and maintained that it was indeed a side effect. DUH…..

    I got the call at work after she went home. The intense pain waves in her head and calves subsided. But she still had a headache. She described it as the pain you have after a migraine (yes she takes meds for those too). That was yesterday. Today she awoke early in the am, headache just as it was yesterday. I took her to our GP and although he is not an expert, and obviously knows the injection was the cause. He wants to know why or how, himself. He believes that the injection caused a metabolic imbalance. Hence the reason he sent her to the lab, for a blood draw, to check on calcium, magnesium, and I can’t remember the third component. All in the hopes of finding what went wrong.
    We’ll know the results Monday or Tuesday. Anyone wanting to know know more about this, you will be able to email me directly.

    Epilogue: Maggie is 59. Takes several different Rx’s. Oh, by the way, one of the drugs that it said to avoid taking it with, is Advair. Yes she takes that. Whether it’s found out that it was a drug interaction, or that the shot caused an unnatural or unstable metabolic reaction, that trigged the very horrible adverse reaction, she won’t take any more.

    I would hate to see almost $2k worth of Forteo be destroyed.

    Steve (bidelmanst at yahoo dot com)

    • Jane July 20, 2014, 4:13 pm

      How was Forteo prescribed when the company states that nobody who has received radiotherapy should get this drug. I ask because I have had radiotherapy and have been refused Forteo.

    • Randa October 17, 2013, 2:56 am


      My name is Randa, I suffer from a very severe osteoporosis. This morning was my very first injection and I had exactly the same wavy pain in my neck, head, lower back. Same as contractions that were leaving me with such a shortness of breathing. My head was exploding. Was rushed in ambulance to hospital. The symptoms occurred after exactly 15 minutes of the injection, the teaching nurse was still at my place. I’m back home now with a terrible migraine but reading and googling about it, found your testimony, flabbergasted because of the similarities in the adverse reaction, decided to drop you a note. Please did you know better of what happened to Maggie, if it was an metabolism imbalance or a medication interaction?
      Thank you so so much for giving me some feed back. Did she use it again?

  54. LazyJ September 27, 2012, 4:20 pm

    I started Forteo in February 2012. This website has been very helpful in hearing other people’s stories, since February my overall health has really deteriorated. I have an extreme lack of energy,my wrist and hands ache, and
    I have a lot of flim build up in my esophagus. I have lost about 15 pounds and have little appetite. I have gone from a healthy man to extreme feeling of being unwell. I’ve also suffered from shortness of breath which I haven’t seen other people complain of , but I had my heart checked completely and it’s very healthy! it’s been so helpful to know that others have these side effects. I’ve been relating them to other possible causes. I called my doctor and he was very defensive but did say to stop the
    Forteo. I’m going to stop it today and will let you know if my good health returns.
    Sincerely, Lazyj

    • linda sickora April 17, 2013, 1:42 pm

      please let me know what happens. i have myasthenia gravis and asthma and i am to start forteo in 2 days. i am scared to death of it.

    • DebV October 20, 2012, 6:23 pm

      I have been on Forteo for one month and have shortness of breath, loss of appetite and extreme fatigue. I haven’t had any factures in the past month which is a big improvement because I had 7 spontaneous fractures in 4 months after being treated with steroids for Crohn’s Disease. I see my doc on Monday and will probably stay on the Forteo as long as the symptoms don’t get worse. I’m going to try pilates for osteo now that I am stabilized.

  55. Megan Osborne September 21, 2012, 11:16 am

    My GYN has prescribed since my bone density test revealed -3.5 on my hips. I am 53. Thought I was healthy. Never broke a bone, have one crowned tooth in the back. No pain (not even Advil in my med cabinet) I do need to eat better, and exercise more. I am little 5’5 115 lbs. which comes naturally. After reserching the internet on this drug I say NO WAY! I wiil clean up my diet, excercise and take more vitamins and supplements. I am not a guinea pig!

    • linda sickora April 17, 2013, 1:44 pm

      good for you. i think i will also clean up my diet and take my chances. i drink ovaltine several times daily in soy milk. forteo scares me and i do not need any more problems added to the ones i already have. thank you for your input.

    • Kim March 11, 2013, 10:18 pm

      I am the same. I am 54 and was diagonised wit severe osteoporsis in my spine with a t score of -2.8. I have esophogus problems and therefore can not take any Fosomax etc by mouth. My doctor said Foreto is my only option. I am totally surprised by this diagonsis – I have never broken a bone. I am really afraid to take Forteo because of the side effects but wonder if I should because I of my age. I am terrified of needles (still cry when I get a shot) and then recently read that people can lose their hair – not to sound vain, but I have beautiful hair. I don’t like to do any research on what to do, because I feel lik my options are limited and I start to get discouraged when I read anything about osteoporosis. My husband is self employed and I pay for my own insurance – I am terrified of fracturing a bone and losing everything I have to be in a state run nursing home! Any suggestions would be great!

      • Jane July 20, 2014, 4:18 pm

        That t-score is surely not even mild osteoporosis.

      • linda sickora April 17, 2013, 1:48 pm

        i drink ovaltine every day several times a day in soy milk. i too have significant bone loss, but i think i am better off taking my chances with an altered diet, and using natyral, possible remedies, and skip the osteocsarcoma. i have 5 fractures in my spine, have never broken a bone so i think forteo is a bit extreme for me. i am 63 years old.

      • Beth March 21, 2013, 1:52 pm

        I am 55 and have been taking Forteo for almost one year. I too had osteo in my spine (-3.5) I have seen a marked improvement in my spine which is now at -2.6. I have had no ill effects from the drug and have been religious about giving myself the shot every day, along with Ca and Vit D. I will continue to take Forteo for another year and then switch to Reclast (most liekly) to preserve what I have gained back. The needle feels like barely a pinch. I have gotten used to it. Yes, it’s a pain in the rear, but it’s worth it to see such a dramatic change. Best of luck to you!

    • Bev. February 3, 2013, 4:37 pm

      Me too – same age. Gyno gave me the option for Forteo – read the reviews and I think I’m going to pass. 5’3, 116 pounds (petite). I walk daily but I’ve now increased my walks, started taking calcium and vitamin d (never did – I’m a very healthy eater – just can’t drink milk – makes me sick). I think I’ll choose Boniva and then get another bone density test next year.

      I HATE the fact that I would be taking a medicate that if I’ve ever lost my job (husband is self employed so we depend on my health insurance) then what? I can’t pay 600.00 a month for a medication that may or may not work.

      Glad to see that others have the same doubts as I do.

      • linda sickora April 17, 2013, 1:51 pm

        my ins. co. was billed $1100.00 for my first dose of injections. how can they justify that? and it may or may not work. i think i will opt not to use the forteo. too many adverse side affects. i already have myasthenia gravis and asthma. don’t need any more problems.

  56. NANCY JEFCOAT September 3, 2012, 6:25 pm


    • Jo Getter September 6, 2012, 5:33 pm

      As I wrote just before your entry…forteo worked wonders for me!!! It greatly improved my T-scores and obviously strengthened my bones enough to endure a horrific fall without any fractures! I, personally, am so grateful for the invention of this medication. For the most part, I do not like to use pharmaceuticals and look for other healing/treating modalities; however, there are times when a medication is beneficial. Forteo literally saved my life. If you chose to maintain this course of treatment, may it help you as it did me. Jo

  57. Jo Getter September 3, 2012, 12:37 pm

    I don’t think anything is 100% good or bad. Forteo saved my life! When I started taking Forteo in 2006, my T-score was
    -5.3 and my ribs were fracturing literally from rolling over in bed. After the 5th rib fractured (I thought I was just having muscle spasms until a PET scan proved otherwise) my endocrinologist recommended Forteo. At that time, after forteo had been available for 4 years, there had not been one documented case of osteosarcoma in a human. I felt it was “take the forteo or risk my lower spinal column crumbling”. I took the forteo injections daily for 2 years until 2008 with absolutely no side effects. In 2009, my dexascan score was -3.1. At that time, I had a very serious fall while holding something in each hand. I landed directly on my chest and chin requiring 6 stitches in my chin. My chest was bruised from the falls impact and very painful. And…nothing broke!!! If not for the forteo, I would have ended up like a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle with bone fragments ripping into my heart and lungs. My belief is: saying something is always “bad” is the same as saying something is always “good.” I’ve been maintaining stable T scores. Also, I’m VERY grateful for this SaveOurBones program. I stopped fosamax 6 months ago, made significant changes in my diet (I had no idea about alkaline/acidic foods and learned I had been eating about 80-90% acidic foods) and feel empowered and wonderful! Yeah to us all for taking care of ourselves!…and thank you to Vivien!

    • timi fl July 1, 2013, 3:46 pm

      pls tell me how the last year has done with the forteo ?

      especially regarding your statements about acidic food .

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  59. August 6, 2012, 3:55 pm






  60. Patricia Fister August 3, 2012, 4:55 pm

    I am suffering from serious osteoporosis because no doctor bothered to find out WHY I had osteoporosis. They just wanted to prescribe Fosamax. This went on for several years until I went to a good Endocrinologist who found out using 2 simple blood tests that I have parathyroid disease. I am awaiting surgery.

    In the process of researching parathyroid disorders, I came across some interesting things about FORTEO. There are some other very mysterious things about this drug also. For instance, why was it approved by the FDA for osteoporosis when it was developed specifically for a very rare disorder called hypOparathyroidism? In addition, why do the foremost experts in the world on parathyroids and PTH NOT RECOMMEND FORTEO for the treatment of osteporosis? It appears that FORTEO was approved for osteoporosis AFTER it was developed and approved for hypOparathyroidism, which is very rare. Oh and how do over 99% of people with hypOparathyroidism get it in the first place? By being operated on for hyperparathyroidism by a clumsy general surgeon, who accidentally removed all traced of parathyroid tissue, leaving the hapless patient not able to regulate calcium in their bodies.

    • Darlene February 11, 2013, 1:19 am

      Thyroid cancer also removes your parathyroid glands. They try to save two of them, but ?? Depends on the surgery. I have one, and they lost sight of the other. They are real small.

  61. Sherry July 26, 2012, 1:07 am

    I feel for the people that go to doctors & follows orders without hesitation regarding pharmaceuticals. It’s like sheep being led to slaughter. One should research & educate themselves at least to a certain extent. I would never be put in a position to be used as a guinea pig like that & for that amount of money?! I was diagnosed with osteo years ago, had some symptoms show up but w/checking out all my options on alternatives (I am taking 50,000 units a mo. of Vit.D3, & K2.) Do other supplementation of the best available along with tonic herbs & bone strengthening exercises. I’m back at Risk now. I’m feeling fine. I believe in what I’m doing because it resonates with me. I could never believe in toxic synthetics put into my system.

    • Suzanne October 24, 2012, 5:21 pm

      I’d sure love to know what all you’re taking. I am seriously considering starting Forteo this week.

    • Me July 29, 2012, 3:34 am

      You really are smart, aren’t you? But do you really feel you need to deride other people? After all, everyone has different backgrounds, and you can’t possibly know what made a person take osteo drugs. I think this forum would be a lot nicer if we stayed away from mockery and tried to support each other instead.

  62. Sandra Hardy July 16, 2012, 3:33 pm

    I started Forteo 14 months ago. Had a bone density test in June and was expecting good results. Instead I found out that my osteoporosis is worse and had shown up in more places.
    Left femur T-score of -3.3, spine -2.5, forearm -3.1, plus what showed up in 2010. The dr.s comments are that my fracture risk is high, and bone density has declined significantly in spine and left hip since the baseline test of 2010. She advised that I continue Forteo until at least Sept. 2013. It makes no sense at all to me.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA August 3, 2012, 8:15 pm

      Orwellian, to say the least…

  63. V B July 9, 2012, 3:13 pm

    My wife took Forteo for 2 years for her bone density from June 2007 to June 2009. 2 months ago, she had shingles @ age 54. Can it be the side effect of this medicine ?

    • linda sickora April 17, 2013, 1:56 pm

      shingles is listed as one of the possible side affects of forteo. but lots of other things can cause shingles also. i had them and they said it was triggered by stress. i wonder if they really know….

    • phil January 21, 2013, 9:40 pm


    • Sweet tweet November 30, 2012, 1:00 am


  64. Sofia June 30, 2012, 9:15 am

    I´ve been on Forteo since August, and want to stop taking it, but worry about the consecvences, since I´ve read that immediately after quitting, your bone density will deteriorate badly (if you don´t proceed whith bisphosphonates or Prolia afterwards, which I won´t do). So I would really appreciate if anyone who knows more about this could comment or give an advice.

  65. Alan Brezin June 10, 2012, 9:21 pm

    Just started my third month of Forteo and I still am having joint pains in feet, ankles, shins, hands and elbows. They weren’t supposed to persist this long. I would like to think they are bone “growing pains” but I refuse to put up with them anylonger. I stopped the Forteo for now to see if I feel better. I am physically active but the pain is bad enough to discourage me from exercising sometimes. I don’t think there is anything better for building strong bone than weight bearing exercise! Maybe quality of bone is more important than density of bone as measured by a DexaScan?

    • Joan September 5, 2012, 8:44 pm

      i have all the same symptoms…..pains all over and I have decided to stop because I can’live like this. I don’t have osteoporosis…., but bones in arms are disinter grating
      Due to elbow. Replacement surgery.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA August 3, 2012, 8:14 pm

      You bet!

  66. FC June 1, 2012, 2:54 pm

    I worked for Lilly’s Forteo Connect support program. Everything with this drug is a scam, including the “support” program used to try to keep patients on the 2 year therapy. Side effects they don’t tell you about are hair loss, shingles, thyroid problems, along with the normal muscle and joint aches, constipation, racing heartbeat, etc. Lilly was so worried about what we said to patients everything was scripted. You could be punished if you went off script to try and help a patient.
    Also bear in mind Lilly has a Corporate Integrity Agreement with the FDA currently for deceptive marketing practices.
    Don’t get me wrong, I did speak to patients that this drug has helped, however it seems that many more were sickened by it. Hopefully the once a year IV treatments will become more popular than the Forteo. I would never recommend this drug to any family member or person I cared about.

    • Wanda Burns May 30, 2013, 12:59 am

      I took Forteo for a month, actually last July, injections in my stomach every day for 31 days. Then woke up with severe pain around my middle or waist going thru to my back. Went to my orthopedic doctor who had prescribed Forteo, this was two days later when I could see him. Now I am not only in pain but I have started drawing to the right. I see my doctor, he tells me it’s not the Forteo doing this, sounds like my kidney. Go to a urologist, have test, not my kidney, two weeks go buy, by now I am twisted, my navel is under my left breast. I have to use a cane to walk and hold me up or I lose my breath. I been going to Dr.after Dr. My primary Doctor wanted to send me to the Mayo Clinic right off, I wish I had went then. I’m a go person, I love to do things for my husband, dad, children, 10 grandchildren and 2 greatgrand children, but I can hardly do things for myself, my husband, has top do practually everything. Before I started taking Forteo in July, my family and all the grand and great children, went to Florida in June on vacation and I ran on the beach and walked forever on the beach and played with my family and then a month later I’m cripple. Anyoneelse with similar reaction.

    • Pilar March 7, 2013, 7:48 pm

      I really dissapointed with your comment. I would not trust you with what you said. Where is your integrity if you found out that everything is a lie you should left your job or contact the FDA? and you are promoting a new medication now? I have been in the treatment for 2 years and never had any side effect. Actually I am trying to go back to get the medication again. YOu should delete your coment you are making good to no one with it!

    • Maryann September 6, 2012, 11:37 am

      I have been on Forteo for one month now. Unable to take bisphosphonates. I have noticed some hair loss in the past week. In your studies, how serious did this side effect become? I had alopecia many years ago and do not want to go through that again.

    • cs June 12, 2012, 10:48 am

      I cannot tell you how glad I was to read the 6/1/12 comment frm fc who was part of the “support grp” for Foreto. Forteo made me very sick after 3 weeks & I have not used it since. One of the main reasons I stopped was all the phone calls from the “Forteo support grp.” Whenever I mentioned a side effect, I was immediately transferred to someone who records “side effects.” My fear re this drug started to rise since these people were calling me so frequently. No other drug company has ever called me to ask how I was doing w/their drug. The price is exhorbitant! The cost is $1132 a mnth! While I do have insurance, I would quickly go thru the “donut hole,” & w/ins co-pay, it would still cost $60 a mnth. That aside, it made me sick, (vomiting, headache, bp so low I could barely get out of bed to walk across the room. I decided if this was how I had to “live,” I wld rather be dead! I had no social life, barely had the strength to even talk on phone. And all the “support” from Lily made me leery of continuing even w/out side effects.

    • Alan Brezin June 10, 2012, 9:34 pm

      I wonder if you ever contacted me from Lily’s Forteo Connect? I’ll bet it ruined your love life constantly hearing yourself repeat that insipid script even when you were away from work! :-)

      • Diana July 25, 2012, 10:05 am

        Great roundup! The Eventlet bcnahmerk could benefit from a little tweaking. I used the following code and achieved significantly better performance.from import socketfrom eventlet import api,hubshubs.use_hub(“pyevent”) def handle_socket(sock): sock.sendall(“HTTP/1.0 200 OK\r\nContent-Length: 5\r\n\r\nPong!\r\n”) sock.close() server = socket.socket()server.bind((‘localhost’, 8030))server.listen(500)while True: try: new_sock, address = server.accept() except KeyboardInterrupt: break # handle every new connection with a new coroutine api.spawn(handle_socket, new_sock)The major difference here is that makefile() and its consequent object creation cost are not called. This alone makes a big difference, and has the side benefit of being more readable and closer in spirit to the other tests.Also, this code uses pyevent for event dispatching. Pyevent is disabled by default within Eventlet because it is not compatible with threads, but in this sort of test, it provides better performance.

  67. catherine May 23, 2012, 7:50 am

    I am 29 yrs old and started forteo today as prescribed by my doctor due to my -2.5 dexa scan on my spine lower lumbar. I have also low vitamin d and my urine test came back that my body isn’t holding on to any vit d. Bc of my age and with me not knowing about anymore kids in the future my doc would not put me on any other meds which could ruin that possibility. I unlike the others here hope this works bc i have had three serious foot fractures in the past 4 years and the last one has taken the longest to heal. For me this is my only shot right now for things to either turn around or come to a stand still.

    • Kathleen November 13, 2012, 9:40 pm

      I took Forteo for two years every night. I also have fibro so I was used to aches and tiredness.
      I had a reclaspt infusion last Friday and became really sick like a bad flu for about six days.
      I am 56. I have not broken anything and take my Citracal calcium citrate and D3 petites twice a day. I have difficulty sitting too long as my tail bone hurts, feels like a cyst. I take Tramadol for pain. I also take an antidepressant for chronic depression. I have had weeks of being bedridden and then will be okay and energized for a few days.
      My mother who died at age 86 last March was in the original test group for Forteo with no bad side effects. She also was in the Enclaspt test group without bad side effects.
      This has been my experience with these medicines.
      I truly hope the women who have not been helped by these drugs will not give up and continue to search for the best remedies for them. I am so sorry for your pain and unpleasant experiences.

      • Evelyn June 5, 2014, 6:01 pm

        How old was your mother when she was in trial program?


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    • Jennifer July 20, 2012, 11:12 am

      Hello Catherine–I’m curious to know if you are still on Forteo and if it has been successful for you. I am 39 years old. After years of pain at a tibia fracture site (broken 17 years ago) and numerous doctor visits, I finally found the right doctor and learned that the break never healed. I have been working with several doctors for 2 years to heal this nonunion. They now want me to start Forteo next week. I’m a bit concerned to say the least.

  68. Colette Markey (do notpublish) May 19, 2012, 2:06 pm

    I wrote a history of my osteoporosis and my prescribed Forteo history. I asked that My name and email not to be printed but I wanted my comments printed. Where are my comments

  69. Colette Markey (do notpublish) May 19, 2012, 10:29 am

    History of many stress fractures feet,age 51.
    Diagnosed Osteoporosis 1995. Started on Fosamax 1995-2007
    2000-2001 Developed numerous vertebral fractures (Several Kyphoplasties performed 2001-Life Saving)
    2003 Forteo was implemented for 18 months
    2006:Vertebral Fracture.
    2007: L. femoral Fracture.
    Dec 2010: L.Sacral Fracture.
    Dec 2010: Forteo re-started for an additional 6 months.( FDA Total usage 24 months.)
    Feb 2011:Rt. Sacral Fracture
    May 2012 Rt. Sacrum re-Fracture -Forteo recommened . Present Meds for Osteoporois: Calcitrical with D
    Decision is not made regarding continuation of Forteo.

    • Colette Markey (do notpublish) May 19, 2012, 2:32 pm

      I have made a decision not to take Forteo. I have used prescribed dosage of 24 months. Which is the total amount allowed by the FDA. However, my bone issues are present and troublesome-to say the least. The site of my recurrent fracture, Rt.Sacrum, S1-S2 is most disturbing. Prolia was suggested by another renonwned MD last year. I have to consider this. Any other participant with a similar history to mine?

      • Jo Getter September 3, 2012, 12:54 pm

        I have just joined this online community and not exactly sure how it works. I just finished typing my very positive forteo story. As I’m reading comments, I came upon yours and just want to say “Bless your heart!”. I have no personal herstory that has the extent of fractures that you do. From what I understand, tho the recommendation is 2 years of forteo, IF needed, i’d be able to have a short “booster” of it for 3-4 mo. Forteo was a totally positive and beneficial experience for me tho I read that that is not the case for everyone. How are you doing now? What have you decided? My heart is with you. Jo Getter

    • Colette Markey (do notpublish) May 19, 2012, 2:08 pm

      I would appreciate a reply from the Website.

      • C.Markey May 19, 2012, 2:38 pm

        Again, what is required to hear from the community please?

        • Jose L. Suescun December 28, 2012, 11:34 am

          If you have not, why don’t you try “Save Our Bones Program”?

  70. Beth May 8, 2012, 1:15 pm

    I recently learned that I have low blood calcium and was diagnosed at 40 with osteoporosis. Though premenopausal, they put me on Fosamax from 1997- 2005, which did nothing. My doctor, an early tester of Forteo has ignored my other illnesses and focused on the osteoporosis ( 2-point bone density scan), told me yesterday, when I expressed concerns about the drug, that I will die without Forteo. I do not think that he has done any testing to explain what is wrong with my parathyroid, nor is he interested in having me try anything but Forteo, which is sitting in my refrigerator like a lurking monster. In 2007, I had a tumor that was related to over-exposure to radiation removed along with half my thyroid, but this doctor hasn’t touched my neck. I am 55, with a BMI of 20.4 and little fat to inject the Forteo into. This situation has me extremely concerned.

    • Dee February 28, 2013, 10:49 pm

      One of the contraindications for use of forteo according the packet I received was prior exposure to radition therapy. I think that means it’s not recommended for those people. You might want to check on that.
      Good luck. Hope you do well with what ever solution you choose.
      My Dr. has recommended it for me and I too am doing my research before I decide what to do.

  71. Larry April 24, 2012, 11:18 am

    In 1997, I had back surgery with a spinal fusion. During this operation, my surgeon found that my bones were soft and were of a person in their 80’s. I was sent to an endocrinologist and he determined I had osteoporosis. I am a male and was only 47 years old. I was given Fosamax and then Actonel but my stomach could not tolerate them. I tried dietary changes but apparently those did not work because in 2004, I sustained a compression fracture in the vertebra above my fusion from coughing during a bad cold. From this my endocrinologist put me on Forteo which I took for 24 months. Upon completion of Forteo my bone density started to rise. It apparently kick started my body. I then was put on Zometa for a year and one half. Then went to Reclast, since I would only have to get a yearly infusion. I have had three of those yearly infusions and at my last Dexa scan my bone density is where I no longer have to take any drugs and can just use diet now. After reading the posts on this site, I have been recalling some joint pains the last several years and have been told these are just some bone spurs which older people get. I will continue to monitor and will follow directions in the Save Our Bones Program.

    • Mombi August 22, 2012, 6:38 pm

      Thank you for sharing. I’m a 50 year old lady with the bones of an 80 year old, and after doing some research and speaking with a former FORTEO rep (whose own mom and grandma have used it with success), I insisted on FORTEO over biphosphonates.
      I am hopeful, and I am not afraid of pharmacueticals; I research the heck out of any med I might need to take. Other than vitamins, FORTEO is all I take.
      I am hopeful. Also, I a little “achey” and a little tired. It’s been a month. I’ll try and post again, as time progresses.

      • Suzanne October 24, 2012, 5:36 pm

        Hope you will post an update very soon!

      • Jo Getter September 3, 2012, 1:02 pm

        I just posted my very positive forteo story. It literally saved my life! I certainly hope the same will be true for you!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA August 3, 2012, 8:09 pm

      Of course, the medical establishment blames “aging” for many of the nasty drug side effects. But we know better :)

    • Beachladyblues May 8, 2012, 7:27 pm

      Here goes… My 19 yo son was Dx with IJO at age 12 after he fell and Fx a hip. On Fosamax since. Dexa scans climbed slightly the dropped. After 4 surgeries in hope to delay replacement (due to AVN) he now needs the replacement. Plus Scan results are at a new time low. MD insisted on Someta (No way). So I took him to Boston childrens hospital for info followed today by an appt with the local childrens hospital’s bone health team. It was suggested today to consider Forteo. There are posts here on both sides of the fence. IJO had so far left my son with a life time of issues with his hip,back and feet. Plus now he is in pain. As a parent its a difficult position to decide for your child. Unrelated.. my son also has Aspergers syndrome (autism).

  72. rhonda australia April 13, 2012, 11:08 pm

    Dear Johanita, no I don’t beleive that the Dexa-scan machines would be rigged,however I don’t know who produces them or who subsidises the cost of these machines?but, I do beleive that you don’t always get the same results from each scan machine and, that different machines,makes,and models ect, can produce difference outcomes. Every person has some story as to pathology test result ending up when thoroughly investigated and re-done to be less than perfect showing up as, not as bad as first thought, or more severe than expected, or even “no problem at all everything all ok” so there can be large discrepences in all pathology and testing. For me, I would want multipul testing on all different scans before I would be prepared to make a full and contious decision about my health. ( of which I have done with other health issues and with excellent results,and without medical assistants and against the advice of my MD)

    “To each his own” Rhonda

    • Jose L. Suescun December 28, 2012, 11:51 am

      General Electric produces one model called Lunar. There are other manufactures. And yes, different machines give different results

  73. Dorothy Openshaw March 14, 2012, 6:23 pm

    I was on the Forteo for four months approximately and it did me no good at all that I could tell. I became very fatigued and finally went to the doctor and found that my calcium level was extremely high. I then got kidney stones and had to deal with that pain. I would not recommend this treatment to anyone. I feel lucky I didn’t end up with bone cancer.

  74. Velma Sturm March 3, 2012, 1:04 am

    Vivian: Hi. Thank you for your serious and light approach to a very interesting topic

    • chana March 4, 2012, 12:13 pm

      LIGHT approach???

  75. Marjorie Holman February 27, 2012, 11:57 pm

    I have been allergic to practically every med I ever took for the last 60 years! I moved to Dallas in 2007 and found a new Dr. I told him of my allergies. Then he promply told me to attend a class where I would be taught to give myself a shot of Forteo every day for 18 months! Needless to say, I did not attend the class and I changed doctors!! I am now 88 and other than painful arthritis in my left hip, I am in excellent health. I am considering prolozone therapy, however. Do you have an opinion about that treatment? Thanks, Margie ^o^

    • Jose L. Suescun December 28, 2012, 11:55 am

      I know about Prolozone. It is effective. I could give you more info, if you email me at

  76. Lois Bateson February 23, 2012, 6:02 pm

    I have been along time believer in alternative medical practices that aids and abets the body’s own healing powers.
    That and yoga have served me well for many years. I am now 83. About 18 months ago, i was dancing at a wedding, having a wonderful time until a young man came along, and seeing this old lady having such fun, came up and gave me an unexpected twirl that caused me to lose my balance, fall, and break my hip. The ER staff thought this was hilarious, The hip was pinned and since then have been exercising and doing all possible to get rid of any gimping or need for a cane.
    My Dr. requested a new bone density test that registered my hip area at a -3.20. My last test ( in a different state) almost 2 years ago had and had read at -1.2. I was told that I was at serious risk and should start Forteo immediately. Scared witless, I reluctantly agreed and started the regime about 6 months ago-hating every minute of it.
    Recently, I noticed increased hip pain in the hip area as well as continued redness around the injection so decided to do further research on the drug and fortunately, at this point, came across the SAVE YOUR BONES ad on the internet. Sold me! I no longer take Forteo, but admittedly am still anxious about fracturing another bone. However, I am encouraged now to go for the collards and other alkalizing foods recommended, exercise, pure water and happy thoughts and hope for the best. I am still unclear about the amount and kind of supplements I should add. I am not good at pill taking. Any advise on this? Thanks, Lois

    • Jose L. Suescun December 28, 2012, 12:10 pm

      No, but I will give you a joke.This 83 y.o man goes to the doctor. The doctor examines him, orders some tests, makes his recommendation and sends him home. 2 months later, the doctor goes to a social affair and sees his patient, dancing with a beautiful blonde, going all over the floor. The doc goes to him and says: Hey! what are doing here? Doctor, I am doing what you told me: get a hot mama and be cheerful. No, idiot! I told you you got a heart murmur and be careful!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA August 3, 2012, 8:07 pm

      Lois, now that you’ve taken your bone health in your own hands, you don’t need to do everything in the Save Our Bones Program to get the results you want. Do your best and enjoy life, with NO nasty side effects :)

  77. anna kriegsman February 11, 2012, 1:07 pm

    I was prescribed forteo two years ago, have 2 more doses to take,i do not want to take them.I have been having severe muscle cramps sporadic in legs.Also hip pain, and jaw tenderness, my latest concern is losing weight and muscle.I turned 65 years old and lost 5 lbs since December of this year.Not trying to loose weight.
    I had my Dr to do blood work up on me yesterday.I am frightned because she want to do a lung x ray. Sarcoma show up in the lungs after the bones.

    I am dealing with bad back 5 degenerative disks,and hernaiated disc which
    i am in physical theraphy dont want the shot in back.Opted to strengthen muscles.Fighting back.

    My question is should i stop the forteo,can it be causing the weight loss.Jaw pain, and dizziness which i did not mention to her because it did not seem significant.
    I am on aciphex and zantac for low grade barretts but it is being monitored.
    i believe that high doses of calcium and vitamin D.And extensive exercise may be as good as putting up with possible sarcoma.I was not told at the time humans were getting this disease only rats.
    What to do,i am at loss my Dr has not called me back on blood work.

    • Heri July 27, 2012, 12:27 am

      I feel this is largely miorifsimnng to someone who doesn’t understand how the frameworks work as the approaches and architectures wildly differ:For example, would fork in two processes and that’s the only reason it won the benchmark. It’s a nice feature but one could argue that this should be handled elsewhere (loadbalancer/clustering).gevent is largely written in C (well, pyrex apparently) and that’s the reason it’s the second fastest (it would clearly win if would run in single process mode).Also, the code approaches differ, some start coroutines/greenlets/whateverlets on a new connection and some don’t. This is a very important difference and the results can differ much depending on this aspect.The error rates worry me – I think it’s a good exercise to find out why they happen. I would add portability and test code coverage to the comparison table.

  78. Mary B. Moore February 4, 2012, 8:42 pm

    I attended a seminar–learned abour forteo. Being on a limited [very] income, I inquired from supplemental insurance—-impossibly expensive !!!!!! I am 81– and glad to be alive, but still need to eat !!!!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA August 3, 2012, 8:04 pm

      A blessing in disguise…

  79. Kay January 28, 2012, 1:04 pm

    I have taken Forteo for 4 months but have decided to stop due to knee and hip pain. Previously I took Fosamax for about 5 years and fell down steps and broke my femur and hip in two places (this was 4 years ago)
    I do not believe the Fosamax helped me. I have been fearful of this Forteo causing cancer however the assistant at the Bone Research Center said not to worry — my body not hers!!! I will just try to excerise and eat properly. I am 74 and recovered completelly from the fall so figure that I am not too bad off.

  80. Debra January 25, 2012, 1:38 pm

    My mom is in the hospital because of high calcium levels, low potassium levels and kidney problems. Newest drug she has been taking is forteo. Symptoms she was having loss of appetite, weakness, falls, confusion, tiredness, wobbly knees ect. My guess is that forteo along with high doses of calcium prescribed by her md have made her sick. We take medications for granted and are not careful enough to monitor what we are taking and how we feel. Listen to your body and trust your common sense. If it doesn’t feel right it probably isnt.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA August 3, 2012, 8:03 pm

      Yes, trust yourself and your common sense…

    • Ishtar March 22, 2012, 3:42 am

      Shouldn’t it be the doctor’s job to monitor closely if perscribing a medication? It seems as if we should be more and more the experts, but then pay the doctor.

      • Dee February 28, 2013, 11:09 pm

        Contrary to what some doctors try to make their patients believe, they do not know everything. Every body responds differently to most every treatment because we are all individuals and there are far too many variables for a doctor or anyone to figure in. That is why it is called practicing medicine. A really good doctor welcomes our questions and any research we share with them. If you are not comfortable with what your doctor is telling you and he or she is defensive when you question him/her, it might be time to find another doctor.

        • Dee February 28, 2013, 11:13 pm

          I completely agree with Vivian. Listen to your body. You live in it 24-7. No one knows what is normal for you better than you.

    • Karen January 26, 2012, 4:44 pm

      I have been taking Forteo for 2 years…just completed the 2 yr program yesterday. The only side affects were very, very minor muscle pain for a few seconds at a time, once or twice a week. NO other side affects. I cant wait for my next bone density test

      • Suzanne October 24, 2012, 5:52 pm

        Please post again.. or if you’re willing to have a conversation with me, post and reference me, Suzanne R. I’d gladly see that you got my phone number (Montana).

        I’d love be able to talk with someone who has had good results with Forteo.


  81. Glenda F January 23, 2012, 1:39 pm

    I have now been on Forteo for 3 weeks. I have noticed my heart starts beating fast for a hour or two after the shot. My biggest issue is my feet hurt so bad it’s hard to walk. I thought the side effects were to go away not get worse…after reading all your comments I think I’m going off of the Forteo. Oh and my nose will NOT stop running since I started the shots and now I’ve had 2 nose bleeds…don’t know if it’s due to the shots but not going to chance it…Thanks

  82. Kathy January 19, 2012, 11:35 pm

    My husband used the Forteo shots for two years. He has now been off of it for about a year and a half. It helped him build up the bone that he had lost and was quite successful. His problem is now though – starting two years ago he had pain in his ligiments in his arms. Then he started having problems with the ligiments in his feet. All of this was basically unexplained pain – he has been undergoing every test out there and many treatments but no one can get to the bottom of this. He now has developed problems in his shoulder and his shin area on one leg. He has a small bone growth on his right shoulder. No doctor has been able to explain any of this yet. I have been doing all kinds of research into some ligament disease or something but have not, until tonight, began looking into the use of Forteo. I will be bringing this up to his doc to look into further. Thanks for all of the former comments – they have helped.

  83. Jo Jo January 19, 2012, 1:29 pm

    I just finished reading all the letters condemning Forteo.I am 83, years old and have been giving myself Forteo shots daily for 15 months since November 4, 2010. I have had no problems or complaints except early morning leg cramps ,sometimes, until I get out of bed.
    They said originally that I have numerous fractures along my spine. I feel great with no other problems.
    I don’t know if this is helping, but I am doing it anyway. Hope I am not sorry. Nothing bad yet!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Jo Getter September 3, 2012, 1:17 pm

      I’m really happy to read other positive forteo stories. It is not automatically a “bad” medicine.

    • Me February 7, 2012, 12:46 pm

      Nothing bad for me either. Forteo gave me my life back – and my osteoporosis was diagnosed at the young age of 42. I am so glad I used it! Virtually no side effects and my DEXA scan shows no sign of osteoporosis OR even osteopenia.

      See your doctor. Forteo might work for you like it did for me. I’ve been off it for several years and am still doing great.

      • Kevin October 19, 2012, 9:26 am

        The skeptic in me wants to believe that everyone posting here is a truthful human being and not a plant for the Forteo manufacturer. This question is to “Me” who posted on Feb. 7, 2012. I’m 52 and have just been diagnosed with osteoporosis in my right hip, quite extreme and osteopenia in my lower lumbar. I just want a few people to tell me if your bone scans (after the 2 year forteo injections) improved extremely to the point that now you are only doing those things that you should have been doing all along to avoid this diagnosis in the first place.

        • Suzanne October 24, 2012, 5:55 pm

          I guess I haven’t taken time enough to explore this website thoroughly.

          Is there a way to follow a comment? To see others’ replies?

          Suzanne R

  84. Loretta January 19, 2012, 1:16 pm

    I have been prescribed Forteo and the side effects have been depression, achey body beyond my “normal” Fibro pain, more fatigue than “normal”.
    Without insurance it would not be close to affordable.
    I have made a decision for me to stop the Forteo and have begun a natural regimen to build bone mass. Feel almost like me again.

    • Jose L. Suescun December 28, 2012, 12:28 pm

      I do not know. if you will read my reply. If you do, there is a successful treatment for fibromyalgia since the mid 1990’s Contact me at, if interested

    • Kevin October 19, 2012, 9:30 am

      Loretta…I was perscribed the Forteo. I have until 11.14.2012 to do my research. I have rather agressive osteoporosis in my right hip and close second in my lumbar. The Forteo scares me more than a bone fracture. I think I am swaying towards an overhaul of my diet, exercise and intake of vitimins and nutrients that promote healthy bone growth. I’m going to give it a chance for a year, then try the bone density test again and see if things have changed for the better. If not, then I may consider doing something more extreme. I would love to hear from anyone, pro’s and con’s just to get my own baseline ideas. Thanks

  85. Dee January 9, 2012, 6:43 pm

    Forteo is a giant scam perpetrated by the drug company! The prescribing doctor gets a huge payoff for every month his patient is on it! It should be obvious to everyone reading this blog that this drug does absolutely nothing but cause misery for whoever dares to use it! DON’T USE IT PEOPLE! GET YOURSELF TO THE GYM AND START EATING PROPERLY!

    • Me February 7, 2012, 12:05 pm

      How dare you suggest that patients needing Forteo simply don’t eat right or exercise!

      By the age of 42 my bones were crumbling – crumbling! After every alternative was tried – and failed to increase my bone density, I took Forteo for 18 months. I was in good shape, ate healthily and exercised. The bone density problem was severe regardless. I have always been
      In great shape – was raised on non-sugar cereals, love vegetables, gave my children grapefruit for a bedtime snack! No – no sugar on top!! I treat my body with respect – yet the density problem. My osteoporosis was so bad, I had the bones of an 80-year-old – IN MY 40s!!

      Eighteen months of Forteo ELIMINATED the osteoporosis…and the intense bone pain that came with it.

      See your doctor if you’re considering Forteo. Do NOT let idiots tell you that you simply aren’t eating right or exercising. SHAME on the previous commenter. SHAME!!!!

      • Kevin October 19, 2012, 9:53 am

        “ME” You are the only one on here that has a strong opinion that the Forteo works. Can you tell me what your bone density numbers were before the Forteo and after. I’m absolutely scared to death to start pumping something in to my body that may have long term issues down the road or even some of the short term side effects. Did you experience any of the horrible sife effects that have been listed for this med? I have until Nov. 11, 2012 to make a decision one way or the other. I would appreciate any feed back you could provide.

    • chana January 12, 2012, 8:36 am

      How do you know the doctor gets a “payout”; Does anyone know if this is true????

      • Nikole August 22, 2012, 4:00 pm

        The doctors do not get payouts from the drug company. At least the one I work for doesn’t!

  86. kathy anderson January 8, 2012, 5:57 pm

    I waited 2 years for Forteo to get out of trials and become available for use because my bone density was so bad and none of the biphosphonates had worked,even though I had taken them for about 7 years! I exercised ate well, took bio identical hormones,gained an exta 10 suggested by my Dr.,never smoked nor drank. I was a model patient with rotten bones.
    I tried the drug and got so nauseous with the first injection. I tried 2 other times and could not tolerate the drug. I called Eli Lilly and asked if I could take a half dose,thinking it was too large of a dose for a 105 lb person. They said “no”. The only bone growth was seen with this one dosage and chances were,I would get no positive results with a lesser dosage. I finally discontinued the drug. I am now trying the Save our Bones suggestions,with no support from my Dr. I figure I have nothing to loose,but what is left of my bones. I hope it works!

  87. Barbara January 8, 2012, 6:40 am

    I have osteoporosis and multiple vertebra compression fractures, esp L4. I took Forteo by injection for nearly 3 weeks when my body blew up with excess water (edema)and rash. I could not fit into my clothes or shoes. I voluntarily discontinued it. After discontinuing the Forteo, the edema and rash left, except some of the edema settled into my left leg which developed big blisters that progressed into cellulitis and put me in the hospital for ten days. My doc said it couldn’t be a reaction to Forteo because edema was not listed as a side effect in the Eli Lilly literature! (I got myself a new doc). I read up on Eli Lilly’s methods of research trials and was shocked; also, Lilly’s relationship w/FDA. So, I’m now doing more research for myself and am happy to find this site. I’m scheduled for back surgery soon so want to fortify myself for that.

  88. Karol Scaggs December 19, 2011, 4:04 pm

    I just finished the required 2 years of treatment of Forteo. I didn’t suffer any side effects, but then I had back and some leg pain before I even started the drug so who’s to say. My density tests were so bad the doctor said it was probably the best bet. Well after 2 years my density remains the same. He told me it did help because I didn’t get any worse.
    Now I am pondering my next step. The doctor said all the exercise and diet changes will not reverse my condition. I am sure you know his next
    recommendation – those horrid shots or pills.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA August 3, 2012, 7:56 pm

      Karol, your doctor is wrong. The right diet, lifestyle and exercises make a huge difference! If you haven’t yet, I urge you to check out the Real Life Results page here:

      Don’t give up on natural osteoporosis solutions :)

  89. Rob Danco November 10, 2011, 2:48 pm

    I had severe osteoporosis diagnosed in 2001, and my T-score for a man was -5.2. The doctor at the time prescribed Fosamax for a year and then Actonel, which I remained on for 4 years. My t-score never got better than -4.7, so they then put me on Forteo, and after 7 months, my T-score was back to -5.2, and I was having side effects as joint pain. I stopped using this, and had an appointment with an Alt. Medicine MD who prescribed natural products and monitored me month to month. After one year, my bone density increased by 19% and in my second year of natural treatments I had a t-score of -3.8 and I was feeling much, much better. I’m very thankful to that doctor for getting me on the right path to make my bone stronger, and I continue to see him at least 4 times a year. I’m very sorry I ever went on Fosamax/Actonel, but am very glad I stopped Forteo after 7 months…….this is a very dangerous drug and only made me worse. Thank you. Rob D.

    • Janet July 3, 2012, 6:44 am

      Would love to know the alternative treatments your new doctor recommended. I’ve been on Forteo about 3 weeks and the side effects have already kicked in. Especially troublesome is the constant tingling and numbness in my left leg and foot. The more I read the more terrified I am to continue this drug. Any help as to specifics of alternative approaches would be greatly appreciated. I do all the usual stuff — Vit D, Citrate Calcium, Mag., Zinc, exercise, walking, eating very heathy foods, etc. Thanks!

      • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA August 3, 2012, 7:58 pm

        Janet, notice the irony here. You’re prescribed a drug to PREVENT fractures. Meanwhile, the side effects can actually INCREASE your risk of falling… and breaking a bone! Does that make ANY sense??? We must change the way we view “medicine”. It’s flawed from the get-go!

      • Linda Burgess July 15, 2012, 7:11 pm

        I have taken the Forteo and then the doctor wanted me to take the Prolia. I will NOT! NO MORE DANGEROUS CHEMICALS! Instead, I am using supplements and just calcium and vitamin D won’t get it. I have begun using “Bone Up” made by Jarrows. Look this up! Doctors are scamming us. We need to take care of our own bodies.

    • WR Grant February 4, 2012, 8:38 pm

      I live in the Atlanta area and would like to know the name of the doctor who treated your osteoporosis.

      Thank you

    • Barbara Biermann January 17, 2012, 1:38 pm

      Who was the doctor I need his help

    • Maxine Hirschel November 23, 2011, 8:12 pm


      • Me February 7, 2012, 12:13 pm

        I did all that you did and yet, it was not until I took Forteo that my osteoporosis was reversed. And at HALF YOUR AGE. When we are very old, there may not be a significant enough reason to take the drug. But for many people – people with odd, extreme, unusual problems (osteoporosis at 80 is not unusual – BUT IT IS WHEN YOU’RE ONLY 42!), Forteo or other meds can be helpful and life saving.

        Every situation is different. I had few side effects on Forteo, if any, and it eliminated my osteoporosis. I had a clear DEXA after using Forteo for 28 months.

        There’s nothing wrong with trying the natural route. But don’t try and play doctor to the whole world. What worked for you might not work for everyone.

        • Victoria March 27, 2012, 8:00 am

          Getting myself to the gym and eating properly will not reverse my osteoporosis to the degree that I need it to, and a host of others who this won’t work for either. I am 25 and have osteoporosis and I’ll look like the Hulk before my bones get better. Be careful what you suggest to people, because you are not a doctor and they will believe it.

          Also, no one should be shocked that the medical industry is a business just like everything else.

        • Me February 7, 2012, 12:26 pm

          Typo – I was on Forteo for 18 months, not 28.

      • chana November 28, 2011, 2:21 pm

        I detect a similar thread here. Are the doctors using a new tactic by intimidating patients who don’t want forteo??

  90. Kay October 30, 2011, 2:24 pm

    I started taking Fortero about 3 months ago and have experience joint pain although I don’t know if it is caused by the medication. Anyone else with this problem????

  91. Kathie Ellerbeck October 27, 2011, 8:19 pm

    Thanks for continuing to educate us on these drugs.

  92. kila October 26, 2011, 12:42 pm

    I have been on Forteo for apx. 1 1/2 months. So much hip & back pain. I had to stop for a day or 2 then try & re-start it again. Pain so bad I am using ice packs to reduce pain & walk. I was told by my bone scan & Dr. I have osteoperosis, so decided to try this drug. Hope I can continue it, but not at all sure I can tolerate this pain. At one point I was unable to even bend over. After being asleep one evening , I got out of bed & WOW, could not even stand up. all bent over & holding on to wall & furniture to get around. NOT good!! I may go back to Fosomax, but it didn’t help much either I’m told. Not knowing what to do. OMG what a mess!!!!

    • Margot Moran November 17, 2011, 6:49 pm

      One week on Forteo and I had severe headaches, worse bone & joint pain. Within 5 months prior to being put on Forteo I was told I had a bone marrow disease. No dr in this town will explore this on Medicare. Between 12/10 & 5/11 I had 3 new fractures, T9, T6, L4 & sudden spurs, bursitis in hips. 3 days after quitting Forteo developed lung problems, can barely breathe. I am scared! I have had fibromyalgia for 40 years, but managed until now. Afraid I am dying. During time of fractures ER never told me I had fractures. I went & got my own records 6/6/11 and nearly passed out info never given me. I just turned 60, this happened when 59 hrs old. Is there help out there?

      • Jose L. Suescun December 28, 2012, 12:43 pm

        I wonder, if you will read my reply. There is a successful treatment for fibro. You do not say, if you have diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, a cancer of the bone marrow. There are excellent alternative treatments for it. You can email me at

  93. vivian spence October 23, 2011, 7:42 am

    I am taking Forteo and seemingly do not have any side effects but after reading about it, I am scared. It seems to do very little to help the bones and the long term effects are not

    • Me February 7, 2012, 12:17 pm

      Don’t be so scared. I took Forteo for 18 months and the worst thing about it was remembering to do it every day (and traveling with it). My osteoporosis is now GONE. I’m very thankful for this as I am only 50 now and am now able tondo things I couldn’t do when I had such bad osteoporosis. Like skiing and skating and not worrying do much about falling down.

      The Forteo was nothing compared to a restricted life and the possibility – likelihood – of needing hip replacements or suffering fractures.

    • Arlene October 25, 2011, 4:52 pm

      How long have you been on Forteo with no side effects ?

  94. Arlene October 20, 2011, 8:52 pm

    I was prescribed Forteo today because I had a compresion fracture at T-12 recently. After researching the medicine and reading all of these comments I have definitly decided not to take Forteo.
    Thank you Vivian and Thank you all for your valued comments !!!!

  95. Janet Anderson October 17, 2011, 7:44 am

    I am 55, have severe osteo, -5.75 and am taking forteo. In the first 3 months, no side effects, now I am having leg and knee pain, which sometimes makes it difficult to walk. My doctor is excited about the forteo, but my mother’s bone dr is not impressed with it, he didn’t say why. The question I ask myself is “is it going to be worth the pain and will it go away after taking it.” Really, how much do they know about forteo?

  96. Faye Shouse October 16, 2011, 3:36 pm

    I have been doing the forteo injections since July 2011. My back has become very weak & shakey. I asked my Dr. if he thought forteo
    could be causing this. He didn’t think it was.
    My legs on the outside below the hip have pain
    What do you suggest?

    • Me February 7, 2012, 12:18 pm

      How do you know for sure that Forteo is causing the pain?

  97. R.L. Bartlett October 15, 2011, 2:53 am

    Hi Vivian, I’m a 52 year old male with severe osteoporosis. The doctor put me on Forteo and my body could only tolerate it for one week. I also have Psoriatic Arthritis and Forteo not only increased my inflamation in my body, but also caused severe bone pain as well as severe weakness (I could not even open up our garage door handle when turning it) which was really scarry. I have gotten off Forteo and reported the side effects. I’m back to Calcium and trying to follow somewhat your diet (even though I don’t have your book? but I do research on Google etc. Thank you!

  98. chana October 9, 2011, 10:34 am

    I had a broken femur-thank you Fosomax.

    After intense physical therapy combined with a bone stimulator,the bone grew back.
    If the bone grew with the bone stimulator, isn’t that the same result as using Forteo.

  99. Ruth Morena October 6, 2011, 9:14 am


    I ound this info on Forteo very interesting.

    I have been thinking about Prolia. Can you offer some thoughts?

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA October 6, 2011, 12:55 pm

      I reviewed Prolia in this blog post, Ruth:

    • chana October 6, 2011, 11:56 am

      Today another study about the synthetic hormone DES came Marilynn Marchione.This was given to women from the 1940’s until 1971 when the US gov’t stopped it’s usage. Now in 2011 they are finding that not only did it affect those women, but their daughters AND sons, and they are now ondering about a third generation.

      So about Prolia-Why even consider it? And Forteo? The same why even consider it when no-one knows for sure what the actual results will be. Or do the companies involved not worry because if given to people of a certain age they might be dead anyways within those 70 years it takes to learn the final results.

      • Me February 7, 2012, 12:22 pm

        Why consider it? When you have decades of surgeries to look forward to if you don’t take it! When you can’t ski or skate or walk on the ice for fear of fracture. When you’ve tried everything else, including natural remedies. When your osteoporosis pain is so bad you want to die.

        There is no one perfect solution. Consider all alternatives.

  100. William Tarr September 12, 2011, 4:02 pm

    I am 81 yr old. I had hyperthyroidism which caused bone loss. Had surgery and calcium level returned to normal, but bone density test showed osteoporosis. Dr gave me Fosamax, which caused lots of joint pain particularly in the lower jaw. My teeth hurt so bad I went to the dentist who told me there was nothing wrong with my teeth, the pain was from the Fosamax.
    My Dr then recommended Reclast. I researched these drugs on the web and the results scared the #$&% out of me. I refused to take any more of these drugs. Ref: “First do no harm”.
    I am now trying the natural way and awaiting my next bone scan.

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