Fosamax is a prescription medication indicated to prevent and treat osteoporosis in women after menopause. It belongs to the family of drugs known as bisphosphonates. It works by slowing down the natural process of bone loss in the body and helps to reduce the risk of fractures.
Fosamax treatment should be taken on its own without any other medications, and you must wait at least 30 minutes before taking other drugs. It is best to have your doctor’s advice before adding another medication to your daily routine.
Uses and Dosage
Fosamax comes in the form of a tablet that is taken once daily. The tablets are available in 10 mg, 35 mg, and 70 mg strengths. Your doctor will tell you how many pills to take and how often. Take the tablet at the same time every day and on an empty stomach with a full glass of water, at least two hours after or a full half hour before eating. Do not take Fosamax in combination with other medications or any vitamin or food supplements.
- The typical dosage of alendronate (Fosamax) for the treatment of osteoporosis in men and women is 10 mg by mouth once a day, or 70 mg by mouth once a week.
- The typical dosage for alendronate (Fosamax) to prevent osteoporosis in postmenopausal women is 10 mg by mouth once a day at least 35 mg by mouth once a week.
- For treatment of osteoporosis caused by steroids, the recommended dosage is 10 mg by mouth once a day.
- For Paget’s disease, the recommended dosage is 40 mg by mouth once a day for 6 months.
Common Side Effects of Alendronate:
- Heartburn, upset stomach
- Stomach pain
- Bone, muscle, or joint pain
Serious Side Effects of Alendronate:
- Esophageal or stomach ulcers:
- Chest pain
- Difficulty or pain when swallowing
- Under the ribcage or in the back, you may experience discomfort or burning
- Severe heartburn
- Burning pain in your upper stomach
- Coughing up blood
- Bloody or black stools
- Eye problems:
- Red eyes
- Eye pain
- Light sensitivity
- Decreased vision
- Bone/jaw issues:
- New or unusual thigh, hip, or groin discomfort
- Jaw pain, numbness, or swelling
- Severe joint, bone, or muscle pain
- Delayed healing in the mouth area
- Mouth infections
- Low calcium levels:
- Muscle spasms
- Numbness or tingling
Form and strength
Fosamax (Alendronate) is available in the following forms and strength:
- 70 mg
- 10 mg
- 35 mg
- 70 mg
- You should not take Fosamax if you have certain problems with your esophagus, the tube that connects your mouth with your stomach, or low levels of calcium in your blood. Taking Fosamax can cause irritation and damage to your esophagus, and taking Fosamax with low calcium levels can put you at risk for serious side effects.
- You should not take Fosamax tablets if you cannot sit upright or stand for at least 30 minutes after taking the medicine. Taking Fosamax can cause serious problems, such as esophagitis and impaired absorption of the medicine.
- Fosamax can cause serious problems in the stomach or esophagus. It should not be taken if you have certain problems with your esophagus, the tube that connects your mouth with your stomach, or if you have low levels of calcium in your blood. Stop taking Fosamax and call your doctor at once if you have chest pain, new or worsening heartburn, or pain when swallowing.
- In rare cases, this medicine may cause bone loss (osteonecrosis) in the jaw, with symptoms of jaw pain or numbness, red or swollen gums, loose teeth, or slow healing after dental work. Additionally, a femur fracture (broken leg bone) can occur, with symptoms of leg or groin pain.
- Fosamax is not indicated for use in pediatric patients, as studies have shown that many children who took this drug had severe side effects such as vomiting, fever, and flu-like symptoms. Therefore, caution should be taken if considering Fosamax for use in children.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How long is it safe to take alendronate (Fosamax) for osteoporosis?
How long you will take alendronate (Fosamax) depends on how your body responds to the medication. For people with a lower risk of fractures, the manufacturer recommends stopping it after 3 to 5 years.
Does Fosamax cause any teeth-related side effects?
Yes, it is possible that Fosamax can cause tooth decay, gum recession, and other dental problems.
Is Fosamax safe to take?
Yes, Fosamax is considered safe to take as prescribed by your doctor. However, it is important to talk to your doctor about any side effects and to take the medication as directed.
What other medications should not be taken with Fosamax?
Certain medications and dietary supplements can interact with Fosamax and should not be taken concurrently. Examples include bisphosphonates, calcium, iron, magnesium, and vitamin K.