Excellence in OMS Research: Bisphosphonate-related Osteonecrosis of the Jaws (BRON)

Bisphosphonates are a recognized and effective class of drugs used intravenously to treat multiple cancer-related conditions. They are also used orally in the prevention of osteopenia and osteoporosis, and include commonly-prescribed name brand preparations such as Fosamax and Boniva.

"We are committed to advancing clinicians' understanding of the most safe and effective way for patients to benefit from the therapeutic properties of bisphosphonate on aggressive cancers," says Dr. Leonard B. Kaban, chief of oral and maxillofacial surgery at Mass General. "For this reason, we continue to answer the call as oral and maxillofacial surgeons rally to explain our findings to the medical community."

As a member of the Advisory Task Force appointed by the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS), Dr. Thomas B. Dodson, director of the Center for Applied Clinical Investigation, participated in creating a position paper on bisphosphonate-related osteonecrosis of the jaws. "This document contains our collective knowledge to date on risk factors for BRON, as well as guidelines for treating affected patients," Dr. Dodson says. Read AAOMS position paper


TB Dodson. Intravenous disphosphonate therapy and bisphosphonate-related osteonecrosis of the jaws. J Oral Maxillofac Surg 67 (suppl 1);44-52.

TB Dodson, Sung-Kiang Chuang. Frequency Estimates of BRON – Is it really zero? J Oral Maxillofac Surg, July, 2008

Wessel JH, Dodson TB, Zavras AI. Zoledronate, smoking and obesity are strong risk factors for osteonecrosis of the jaw: a case-control study J. Oral Maxillofac Surg, 64(4) 625-31, 2008.

TB Dodson, NS Raje, PA Caruso, AE Rosenberg. Case 9-2008—A 65-year-old woman with a non-healing ulcer of the jaw. New England Journal of Medicine, March 20, 2008, 358(12): 1283-1291.

EP Wang, LB Kaban, GJ Strewler, N Raje, MJ Troulis. Incidence of osteonecrosis of the jaw in patients with multiple myeloma and breast of prostate cancer on intravenous bisphosphonate therapy. J Oral Maxillofac Surg, July 2007.

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