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What You Need to Know About Fosamax

Fosamax is a type of medication that is found in the bisphosphonates group. Fosamax slows bone loss while increasing bone mass, which may prevent bone fractures, and is used to prevent or treat steroid-induced osteoporosis and postmenopausal osteoporosis. It is also used to treat Pagets disease of bone.

What is Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is the thinning of bone tissue and loss of bone density over time, unfortunately, there are no early signs of the disease. Symptoms occur after the disease has developed and included:

  • Neck pain due to fractures of the spinal bones
  • Loss of height over time
  • Bone pain or tenderness
  • Stooped posture
  • Low back pain due to fractures of the spinal bones
  • Fractures with little or no trauma

Osteoporosis can be treated and prevented with diet and exercise. However, there is no guarantee. For prevention or treatment, many doctors prescribe a bisphosphonate medication like Fosamax.

The following information is what Fosamax claims it can do to help the prevention and treatment of the disease Osteoperosis.

Fosamax and Fosamax Plus D have prescribed medications from your doctor. The pills show true effectiveness as soon as 3 months and can reverse bone loss by:

  • Decreasing the faster rate of bone loss that occurs after menopause or with the use of corticosteroid medications
  • Increasing the amount of bone in most patients
  • Reducing the activity of the cells that cause bone loss

Because Fosamax is a slow working drug that prevents or treats Osteoporosis you will not know if the drug is working. You will not feel it working however, your doctor can monitor your progress with a bone mineral density test. Fosamax has a 96% success rate were patients who use the drug once daily or once weekly see an increase or maintain bone mass. The doctor also will determine how long you should take Fosamax.

Possible Side Effects of Fosamax

As with every medication, there are possible side effects with Fosamax. These side effects include:

  • Heartburn, indigestion, nausea
  • Difficult or painful swallowing
  • Chest pains
  • Severe bone, joint, muscle pain
  • Jawbone problems such as infection delayed healing after teeth are pulled
  • Stomach pain

If you experience any of these side effects after starting a Fosamax regimen consult with your doctor immediately.

Other glaring side effects found with Fosamax are Osteoporosis of the Jaw or Dead Jaw and low energy femur (thigh bone) fractures. From studies, the fractures have occurred from falls. While the bones have proven to be strong once examined, the regularity of these fractures has cause concern.

Preexisting conditions to consider before taking Fosamax

If you are interested in taking Fosamax to prevent or help treat Osteoperosis, make sure you consult with a doctor if you have any of these conditions prior to taking Fosamax:

  • Certain disorders of the esophagus
  • Have trouble or are unable to stand or sit upright for 30 minutes
  • Have severe kidney disease
  • Low blood calcium
  • Stomach or digestive problems
  • If you are taking any other medications including; prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
  • low blood calcium (hypocalcemia)
  • a vitamin D deficiency
  • ulcers

If you suffer from any of these symptoms you may need to adjust the dosage or take special tests to make sure you can take Fosamax. Some patients who use medicines similar to Fosamax have developed bone loss in the jaw which can include symptoms like:

  • Jaw Pain
  • Swelling
  • Numbness
  • Loose teeth
  • Gum infection
  • Slow healing after injury or surgery involving gums
I have been taking Fosamax for years with no side effects, should I stop?

If you have been taking Fosamax for a while now and have not experienced any of the symptoms or side effects listed above you should be alright with continuing your medication. However, it would be wise to first consult with your doctor about possible new side effects, mixtures in medications, and possible changes in prescription. The side effects can occur at any time during treatment. If you change your routine and add new medicine, vitamin, minerals or anything else consult with your doctor first.

Is Fosamax effective enough that it's worth the risks of the side effects?

All drugs have side effects, and Osteoperosis is a serious disease. If you are interested in taking Fosamax you must first consult with a doctor. They can give you up to date information on side effects, preventions, and treatments. However many side effects will not be known until you start taking the drug.

Along with exercise, diet, and other treatment and prevention habits the doctor can recommend, taking Fosamax has proven to increase the chances of preventing Osteoporosis and strongly improving the effects of treatment if you already have it.

Fosamax and Pregnancy

If you are planning to use any form of birth control pills or birth control devices that affect your bodily hormones you should consult with a doctor before mixing them with Fosamax. While there may not be any harmful side effects with mixing these two medications, there could be a problem with the effectiveness of one or both of them.

While it is not yet known if Fosamax can be passed through breastmilk, you should consult with your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or using any form of birth control that includes pills, or hormonal influence.

Fosamax Legal Info

Possible side effects of Fosamax include:

  • Heartburn, indigestion, nausea
  • Difficult or painful swallowing
  • Chest pains
  • Severe bone, joint, muscle pain
  • Jawbone problems such as infection delayed healing after teeth are pulled
  • Stomach pain

Fosamax has been linked to a serious bone disease called Osteonecrosis of the Jaw (ONJ).

There have been legal proceedings and warning letters about the side effects of Fosamax. If you have experienced any of these symptoms before or after taking Fosamax, consult with your doctor to determine if this was a direct result of the medication.

If you or a loved one has experienced any of the listed side effects you are urged to speak with an attorney immediately. The Law Offices of Edward A. Smith can help. Call us at 916.921.6400 or 800.404.5400 to set up a free consultation.

DISCLAIMER: This document is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a Retainer/Services Agreement. No attorney-client relationship will exist between you and our firm unless and until we enter into a signed Retainer/Services Agreement. The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be medical or legal advice. Do not stop taking any medication without consulting your physician.

Editor’s Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 5.11.20]

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