Actonel prescribed by Doc -- expensive -- Do I need this?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by RedB, Jul 16, 2003.

  1. RedB

    RedB New Member

    Can anyone help with this? My doctor has just added Actonel for osteoperosis to my list of meds. $57 for 4 pills that last one month. Wow! We have insurance, but wow!

    I will try to explain where my spine is at, but he didn't give it to me very well, and I did not ask for a copy.

    Apparently my "something" score was 1.6

    He said on that alone, he would not prescribe this, but my T-4 Lumbar "something" was at 2.3, which he says is not a good thing, and the medicine can help.

    So, how desperately do I want to take another medicine? Please? Any help?

    Thanks, Kathy

    [This Message was Edited on 07/16/2003]
  2. garyandkim

    garyandkim New Member

    Actonel is what I take. Weekly also. I started on Fosomax but, my ulcers acted up. It's 2x's the strength but, I think it's also a different chemical. If you don't treat it you risk not only more bone density loss but, broken bones. The treatment is supose to stop the prosess and help regrow the density. So ya, it's what we do and would say worth it.

    Good luck and if you search the web you can find a lot more info and do a search on the drug name to,Kim and Gary

    PS I have Osteoporosis and Gary Osteoprnia like you on the 2.3.
  3. Shirl

    Shirl New Member

    (Source; Medscape)

    Patient Handout


    The following information is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare professional. It should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Consult your healthcare professional before using this drug.

    Common Brand Name(s):

    This medication is used to treat bone disease (Paget's disease). It reduces bone pain and may prevent long-term complications. It also is used to treat and prevent bone loss (osteoporosis).

    How to Take this Medication
    Follow the directions for using this medication provided by your doctor. You may be instructed to take this daily or to take this weekly, depending on the strength of the tablet. Take this medication at least 30 minutes before the first food or drink of the day. To minimize the stomach side effects, take this medication while in an upright position with a full glass (6 to 8 ounces/180 to 240 ml) of water. Avoid lying down for 30 minutes after taking this. Calcium or iron supplements, sucralfate, vitamins with minerals, milk, as well as antacids containing calcium, magnesium or aluminum may interfere with the absorption of this medication. Take these products at least 30 minutes after taking risedronate. It is important to take the other medications prescribed for your condition (e.g., calcium supplements and Vitamin D) as directed by your doctor.

    Side Effects
    Nausea, diarrhea, constipation, headache and dizziness may occur. If these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor. Report promptly: flu-like symptoms (e.g., fatigue, fever, aches), weakness, chest or stomach pain, pain when swallowing, leg or ankle swelling, joint pain, bone pain. Unlikely but report promptly: unusual fatigue, vision changes, ringing in the ears. In the unlikely event you have an allergic reaction to this medication, seek immediate medical attention. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include: rash, itching, swelling, dizziness, trouble breathing. If you notice other side effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

    Tell your doctor your medical history, including: kidney conditions, low calcium levels (hypocalcemia), trouble swallowing, stomach or esophagus disorders (e.g., ulcers, esophagitis), any allergies. Limit alcohol intake, as it may aggravate certain side effects of this drug (e.g., dizziness). Caution is advised when performing tasks requiring alertness (e.g., driving). This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. It is not known whether this drug is excreted into breast milk. Because of the potential risk to the infant, breast-feeding while using this drug is not recommended. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

    Tell your doctor of all prescription and nonprescription drugs you use, especially of: aspirin and NSAIDs (e.g., ibuprofen, naproxen), iron supplements, vitamins with minerals, sucralfate, antacids (especially those containing calcium, magnesium or aluminum), calcium supplements. Check the label on all nonprescription pain relievers, as they may contain pain relievers/fever reducers such as aspirin, ibuprofen or naproxen. Consult your pharmacist about the safe use of those products. This medication may interfere with certain medical tests. Make sure that laboratory and medical personnel know that you are using this drug. Do not start or stop any medicine without doctor or pharmacist approval.

    If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. Symptoms of overdose may include severe muscle weakness.

    Do not share this medication with others. Laboratory or medical tests will be performed to monitor your progress.

    Missed Dose
    If you take this daily: if you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up. If you take this weekly: if you miss a dose, take the medicine in the morning, then resume your usual weekly schedule on your chosen day. Do not double the dose on the same day.

    Store at room temperature between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 to 25 degrees C) away from light and moisture.

    Advice to Patients from AHFS DI™
    Provide copy of manufacturer’s patient information and instruct patient to review information prior to initiating therapy and with each prescription refill.Review manufacturer’s instructions for correct administration of risedronate, including importance of avoiding foods and beverages other than plain water or lying down for 30 minutes following administration of risedronate and of how to resume therapy in the event of a missed dose.Necessity of swallowing tablets whole, without crushing, chewing, or sucking.Importance of discontinuing risedronate and contacting a clinician if symptoms of severe esophageal adverse effects (e.g., difficulty or pain with swallowing, retrosternal, abdominal or esophageal pain, severe or persistent heartburn) develop.Importance of adherence to any recommended lifestyle modifications (e.g., weight-bearing exercise, calcium and vitamin D consumption, avoidance of excessive cigarette smoking and/or alcohol consumption).Importance of women informing clinicians if they are or plan to become pregnant or breast-feed.Importance of informing clinicians of severe kidney disease.Importance of informing clinicians of existing or contemplated concomitant therapy, including prescription and OTC drugs.