Risk of osteonecrosis is more in patients taking certain drugs for osteoporosis, anticancer drugs or glucocorticoids, those undergoing dental surgery, and people with poor oral hygeine, chronic inflammation, diabetes or ill-fitting dentures. Osteonecrosis is a disease when the bone in the jaw is exposed and begins to starve from lack of blood. A review of more than a decade's worth of research on osteonecrosis of the jaw points to the high risk.
A number of prevention strategies may help protect at-risk individuals, and treatments that are available or under study include the use of antibiotics, surgery, teriparatide, bone marrow stem cell transplantation, and laser therapy.
"Patients need to maintain good oral hygiene especially if they are taking antiresorptive therapy in order to reduce their risk," said Dr. Aliya Khan, lead author of the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research