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Alendronate

Alendronate (Fosamax®) is a medicine that can be used to improve the strength of bones. It has been used in some children with fragile bones due to an inability to walk or stand because of a severe physical disability.

How does the medicine work?

Alendronate works by inhibiting the cells in the body that break down bone as part of bone remodeling. It is given with calcium and vitamin D to improve the strength of bones to prevent fractures and pain.

How do I give the medicine?

Alendronate must be taken on an empty stomach, first thing in the morning, and with 8 ounces of water. After taking the medicine, you child must remain sitting or standing upright for 30 to 45 minutes.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

  • Do not take it later in the day.
  • Take the missed dose on the next morning after you think about it and then go back to your normal time.
  • Do not take 2 doses on the same day.

What are the side effects?

This medication can cause:

  • worsening gastroesophageal reflux (GERD)
  • stomach irritation
  • stomach pain
  • stomach bleeding
  • abdominal bloating and/or tarry stools

These side effects may be worse in children taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication or those with known gastrointestinal diagnoses/ diseases.

What to do if side effects occur

If side effects are noticed, stop the medication at once and call your doctor or clinic.

Questions?

This is not specific to your child but provides general information.  If you have any questions, please ask the doctors or nurses. For more reading material about this and other health topics, please call or visit the Family Resource Center library.

Last Reviewed 5/2016 

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This page is not specific to your child, but provides general information on the topic above. If you have any questions, please call your clinic. For more reading material about this and other health topics, please call or visit Children's Family Resource Center library, or visit www.childrensmn.org/educationmaterials.

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