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Research to improve postmenopausal women’s bone and muscle health

Kolling Institute researchers, Dr. Shejil Kumar and Prof. Rory Clifton-Bligh, have embarked on a pioneering study aimed at enhancing bone health in postmenopausal women within the Northern Sydney Local Health District (NSLHD). The study, titled “Combining Osteoanabolic Pharmacotherapy with Osteogenic Exercise in Postmenopausal Women with Osteoporosis and Osteopenia “The ROLEX-DUO Study,” is set to recruit 100 women aged 50 and above.

The primary focus of the study is to assess the effectiveness of combining exercise plus medication in improving bone and muscle health. Dr. Kumar’s team has obtained ethics approval from the NSLHD ethics committee and governance at Royal North Shore Hospital, where the study will primarily be conducted.

“We know that exercise has benefits on bone and muscle health, and there are effective treatments available to strengthen bones,” Dr. Kumar said.
“However, what we don’t know is whether combining exercise plus medication at the same time can lead to even greater improvements in bone and muscle health than treating with either alone.”

The study will utilise romosozumab, a medication approved in Australia that has been shown to increase bone density and reduce fracture risk in previous international studies. Participants will be randomly assigned to different treatment groups, including a supervised group class focusing on weightbearing exercises and a home-based exercise program concentrating on mobility and balance.

“We believe this combination will be even more effective and could dramatically change the way we treat and prevent osteoporosis going forward.” 

Postmenopausal women between the ages of 50 and 80 are encouraged to participate, as they are at high risk of poor bone health. The study aims to assess how different combinations of treatment improve bone density, muscle strength, body composition, physical function, and risk of falls.

Dr. Kumar and his team are eager to make strides in advancing bone health research and are seeking assistance in recruiting participants for this groundbreaking study within NSLHD. 

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