Fosamax belongs to a class of drugs called bisphosphonates. It is used to prevent and treat certain types of bone loss (osteoporosis) in adults. Osteoporosis causes bones to become thinner and break more easily. This medication works by slowing bone loss. This effect helps maintain strong bones and reduce the risk of broken bones (fractures). It is also used to treat Paget's disease in men and women.
Take Fosamax exactly as prescribed by your doctor. The recommended dose for treating osteoporosis in men and postmenopausal women is either 70 mg once weekly or 10 mg once daily. The recommended dose for preventing osteoporosis in postmenopausal women is either 35 mg once weekly or 5 mg once daily. The recommended dose when treating osteoporosis that is due to steroid use in men and women is 5 mg once daily. The dose for treating osteoporosis that is caused by steroid use in postmenopausal women who are not taking estrogen hormone replacement therapy is higher - 10 mg once daily. A higher dose of Fosamax is required when treating Paget's disease - 40 mg once daily for six months. Take this medication by mouth with a full glass of water. It works only if taken on an empty stomach. Wait at least 30 minutes (preferably 1 to 2 hours) after taking the medication before you eat or drink anything.
Before taking Fosamax you should talk with your doctor if you have narrowing of the esophagus (an esophageal stricture), difficulty swallowing or other problems with your esophagus, low blood calcium (hypocalcemia), inability to sit upright or stand for 30 minutes, kidney disease, kidney failure, any allergies. Do not take any other medicines including vitamins, calcium, or antacids for at least 30 minutes after taking Fosamax. Do not lie down for at least 30 minutes after you take the medication.
You should not take Fosamax if you are allergic to alendronate or to any of the ingredients of the medication, or if you have abnormality of the esophagus, low blood calcium, reduced kidney function. Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant or breastfeeding. This drug is not recommended for use in children.
Possible side effect
Get emergency medical help if you have dizziness chest pain, severe joint, bone, or muscle pain, numbness, difficulty swallowing, worsening heartburn, pain or burning under the ribs or in the back, jaw pain, swelling in your hands or feet, stomach upset, diarrhea, gas, constipation, weakness, back pain, headache. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor.
Tell your doctor about all other medications you use, especially: non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (celecoxib, ibuprofen, naproxen, indomethacin, piroxicam), aspirin, calcium products, magnesium products, teriparatide. Interaction between two medications does not always mean that you must stop taking one of them. Tell your doctor about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking.
Take the missed dose as soon as possible. Skip the missed dose if it is time for your next scheduled dose. Don't take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
If you think you have overdosed the medicine seek emergency medical help at once. The overdose symptoms are nausea, painful heartburn, chest pain, stomach pain, diarrhea, muscle weakness, muscle cramps, numbness, tingling, tight muscles in your face, seizure, irritability, unusual thoughts or behavior.
Store the medicine at room temperature between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store the drugs in the bathroom. Keep all drugs away from reach of children and pets.
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