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A THREE-YEAR COMPARATIVE TRIAL: EFFECT OF COMBINED ALFACALCIDOL AND ELCATONIN

A THREE-YEAR COMPARATIVE TRIAL: EFFECT OF COMBINED ALFACALCIDOL AND ELCATONIN

T. Fujita1, Y. Fujii1, B. Goto1, A. Miyauchi2, and Y. Takagi2
1 Calcium Research Institute, 250 Makamicho, Kishiwada, Osaka 596, Japan
2 National Sanatorium, Hyogo Chuo Hospital, Sanda, Hyogo 669-13, Japan
J Bone Miner Metab (1997) 15:223-226

Abstract
The effect of agents commonly used...in Japan — calcium, alfacalcidol (la-hydroxyvitamin D3) elcatonin (eel calcitonin derivative) and an alfacalcidol-elcatonin combination—on lumbar spine bone mineral density (BMD) was assessed in 136 subjects aged 51-83 years with various degrees of [bone loss], divided into five groups approximately matched for age and BMD over a period of 3 years. Lumbar spine BMD decreased by about 3.5% without treatment but was maintained at approximately baseline level on elcatonin. Oral administration of 900 mg/day calcium as AAACa (active absorbable algae calcium) or 1 mg/day alfacalcidol increased lumbar BMD by 4.5% or 3.7%, respectively, after 3 years. Combined use of alfacalcidol and elcatonin was most effective, increasing the BMD by 8.0% after 3 years.

Extremely low calcium and vitamin D intake in Japan with consequent low calcitonin secretion may be responsible for the favorable effects. Alfacalcidol, an active form of vitamin D, and elcatonin acting through different mechanisms may act synergistically on bone to increase BMD.