Welcome to this month’s Save Our Bones Bulletin, where you’ll find fascinating new research on how artificial indoor lighting affects your bones, why more people than ever are refusing osteoporosis drugs, and Merck’s latest legal move regarding thousands of Fosamax-induced femoral fractures and the resulting lawsuits.
Let’s get started with the latest osteoporosis news!
1. Indoor Light Weakens Bones And Immune System
The vast majority of human history has taken place without electricity at all, much less artificial lighting. Based on recent studies and congruous research around the world, scientists believe that humans have a close connection with the light-and-dark cycle, and that exposure to light and dark has a profound effect on our bodies – including (and especially) our bones.
“Artificial lighting could be making us frail, withering muscles and making bones more fragile, according to a new study. …
Researchers kept mice under a constant light for six months…When the mice were examined, they were found to be suffering from muscle loss and the early signs of osteoporosis, while their immune system appeared as if it was reacting to an infection. …
Professor Johanna Meijer, of Leiden University Medical Centre in The Netherlands, who led the research, said: ‘We used to think of light and darkness as harmless or neutral stimuli with respect to health.
‘We now realize this is not the case based on accumulating studies from laboratories all over the world, all pointing in the same direction.
‘Our study … showed that the absence of environmental rhythms leads to severe disruption of a wide variety of health parameters.’
… the mice recovered after they were switched to natural light.
‘The good news is that we subsequently showed that these negative effects on health are reversible when the environmental light-dark cycle is restored,’ Professor Meijer said.”1
This study shows that there is just no substitute for regular exposure to nature and the natural cycles of daylight and darkness. Research shows us time and again that there are significant health benefits to getting outside into a natural setting. It helps you feel more energized, positive, and calm, relieving stress and reducing cortisol levels. All of those things are essential for bone health.
And of course, the more you’re outside, the less you’re exposed to artificial lighting, which in our modern day can extend well past the time when it’s dark outdoors. Even after we go to bed, many of us have electronic devices, clocks, and screens emitting light all night long.
This disruption in biological rhythm is in direct opposition to healthful sunshine exposure and the immune-building, bone-strengthening effects of Vitamin D, fresh air, and exercise. And if you can spend some time outdoors near a source of water, all the better! Water in motion actually releases negative ions that alkalize your body.
So go ahead and plan that hike today, and if you’re not able to get outside every day, try to make a point of doing so as often as possible.
2. Doctors To Be “More Aggressive” In Prescribing Osteoporosis Drugs
Much to the frustration of the Medical Establishment, more and more knowledgeable and informed “patients” are refusing to take osteoporosis drugs. And an increasing number of those who are taking the drugs want to stop. Not surprisingly, a call has gone out for doctors to take a more aggressive approach in getting osteoporosis patients to take the drugs.
“Last month, three professional groups — the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, the National Osteoporosis Foundation and the National Bone Health Alliance — put out an urgent call for doctors to be more aggressive in treating patients at high risk…
‘Ninety percent of patients, when you talk to them about starting one of these drugs, won’t go on,’ said Dr. Paul D. Miller, medical director of the Colorado Center for Bone Research, a medical practice in Lakewood, Colo. “Ninety percent who are on the drugs want to come off. The fear factor is huge.’ …
Doctors had hoped that a new class of medications might avoid the rare side effects, but their hopes were dashed when Amgen announced the same problems in a clinical trial of a drug called romosozumab: a sudden shattering of a thigh bone in one patient and an area of jawbone that inexplicably rotted in two.
‘This was the new miracle drug,’ Dr. Rosen said. ‘It means these effects might occur with any of the newer drugs for osteoporosis.’”2
Dr. Rosen couldn’t be more right – these side effects “might occur with any of the newer drugs.” There is simply no osteoporosis drug that’s 100% safe.
Frankly, it’s mind-boggling that doctors continue to prescribe these drugs, and even pressure their patients to take them, when debilitating side effects are such an eminent possibility. Even when one of their patients experiences atypical femoral fractures as a direct result of the osteoporosis drug(s), doctors, including Dr. Calrson quoted in the above article, continue to prescribe.
Dr. Carlson said she is hesitant to prescribe the drugs, but is doing so anyway, even after she watched one of her patients experience an atypical femoral fracture that forever destroyed the patient’s life.
Quoting from the above article:
“Having that happen to her patient was ‘very tough, very tough,’ Dr. Carlson said. And when the next osteoporosis patient came to her office? ‘Yeah, you do hesitate,’ she said. ‘Your job is “do no harm.” ’”2
Unfortunately, when it comes to osteoporosis drugs, there is more than one way to “do harm.” The article refers several times to “rare” side effects, but they make no mention of the more common but also debilitating side effects, such as acid reflux, bone and joint pain, constipation, fatigue, flu-like symptoms, and kidney damage. And that’s just for bisphosphonates!
The bisphosphonate “alternative,” Prolia (Denosumab), has an equally unpleasant side effects list, including anemia, back pain, muscle pain, eczema, diarrhea, low blood calcium, and pain in the arms and legs. It’s no wonder that osteoporosis patients are hesitant to take these drugs!
Yet doctors are supposed to be “more aggressive” in getting them to take the drugs. So be aware of ramped-up scare tactics from your doctor if you refuse to take the drugs, and don’t be afraid to be firm and confident in your decision.
And as the number of patients suffering from awful side effects continues to climb, drug manufacturers are putting up a significant fight to shut down those who have sued for damages, which bring us to our next news.
3. Merck Seeks To Dismiss Thousands Of “Fosamax Femur” Lawsuits
If you’ve been following the Fosamax lawsuits, then you’re probably aware that the next step is for the cases to go to trial before a jury. Merck’s attorney is fighting hard to keep that from happening, arguing that the FDA prohibited Merck from warning consumers.
“Remaining class-action lawsuits claiming [Fosamax] caused weakened bones and eventual femur fractures should not go to a jury trial, the pharmaceutical company’s attorney argued Thursday before the Third Circuit.
A federal judge in 2014 dismissed more than 1,000 so-called Fosamax Femur cases, tossing the allegations that Merck had failed to adequately warn consumers about osteoporosis drug Fosamax’s risks because the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had not officially approved or rejected the label’s language.
In arguments today before the Third Circuit, Skadden Arps attorney John Beisner said the massive class-action lawsuit should be dismissed because Merck is protected by the ‘impossibility preemption’ doctrine, which in this case means that Merck should not be liable because the FDA had not determined whether its label language was acceptable.”3
When I read this article, I had to stop for a moment in incredulity. Somehow Merck is not responsible for not warning consumers because of regulatory details? If so, then the FDA should be sued for not “approving” the label language fast enough! The fact that consumers were not adequately warned does not change, regardless of the reason why. And the fact that thousands of people have had their lives forever altered by atypical femoral fractures and other side effects also does not change.
It’s ridiculous that regulatory squabbles are detracting from the real issue, which is that people ended up injured by a drug they were told would actually help them.
This is simply one more example of Big Pharma putting its own financial interests over the health and well-being of consumers. In view of its awful side effects, Fosamax should have never been “approved”, and in light of clear research showing how Fosamax causes atypical fractures on a molecular level, sales of the drug should have been stopped years ago.
But that’s not how things work in the pharmaceutical world. Merck knows that a jury trial would add a personal, “human” element to the proceedings, so they are attempting to steer the legal procedure round to an objective topic about whether the language in the warning was preemptive or not.
Thankfully, there is a better way that puts a human face on osteoporosis: yours!
The Osteoporosis Reversal Program Puts You, Not Drug Companies, In Control
The Osteoporosis Reversal Program is not about following “doctor’s orders,” or any orders. Rather, it’s about asking the right questions and learning for yourself how you’d like to manage your bone health.
Stop Worrying About Your Bone Loss
Join thousands of Savers from around the world who have reversed or prevented their bone loss naturally and scientifically with the Osteoporosis Reversal Program.
The Program is a comprehensive step-by-step guide if you want to take steps to reverse bone loss without drugs. It empowers you with scientific evidence and solid research so you can develop your own bone health philosophy and move forward with it in confidence.
1 Johnston, Ian. “Artificial light could be making us prematurely frail.” Independent. July 14, 2016. Web. https://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/artificial-light-street-lights-sleep-frail-muscles-bones-osteoporosis-a7136761.html
2 Kolata, Gina. “Fearing Drugs’ Rare Side Effects, Millions Take Their Chances With Osteoporosis.” The New York Times. June 1, 2016. Web. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/06/02/health/osteoporosis-drugs-bones.html?_r=0
3 Rummell, Nick. “Merck Fights Broken-Leg Claims in 3rd Circuit.” Courthouse News Service. June 30, 2016. Web. https://www.courthousenews.com/2016/06/30/merck-fights-broken-leg-claims-in-3rd-circuit.htm