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Didronel

Last reviewed on RxList: 4/13/2015
Didronel Side Effects Center

Last reviewed on RxList 8/10/2016

Didronel (etidronate disodium) is a bisphosphonate used to treat Paget's disease, and to treat conditions of irregular bone growth due to hip fracture or spinal cord injury. Didronel may be available in generic form. Common side effects of Didronel include:

  • stomach upset
  • diarrhea
  • headache
  • confusion
  • muscle cramps
  • joint pain
  • numbness or tingly feeling

To treat Paget's Disease, the initial treatment regimens of Didronel are 5 to 10 mg/kg/day, not to exceed 6 months, or 11 to 20 mg/kg/day, not to exceed 3 months. Didronel may interact with blood thinners. Other drugs may interact with Didronel. Tell your doctor all prescription and over-the-counter medications and supplements you use. Caution is advised if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant in the future. Didronel may stay in your body for many years. Effects on a fetus are unknown. Consult your doctor before starting treatment with this medication. It is unknown if this medication passes into breast milk, and the effect on a nursing infant is unknown. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.

Our Didronel (etidronate disodium) Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Didronel Consumer Information

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using etidronate and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • painful or difficult swallowing;
  • severe heartburn, burning pain in your upper stomach, or coughing up blood;
  • severe joint, bone, or muscle pain;
  • jaw pain, numbness, or swelling;
  • severe diarrhea;
  • bone fracture; or
  • a red, blistering, peeling skin rash.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • mild diarrhea;
  • headache, confusion;
  • muscle cramps, joint pain; or
  • numbness or tingly feeling.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Didronel (Etidronate Disodium)

Didronel Professional Information

SIDE EFFECTS

The incidence of gastrointestinal complaints (diarrhea, nausea) is the same for Didronel at 5 mg/kg/day as for placebo, about 1 patient in 15. At 10 to 20 mg/kg/day the incidence may increase to 2 or 3 in 10. These complaints are often alleviated by dividing the total daily dose.

Paget's Disease

In Paget's patients, increased or recurrent bone pain at pagetic sites, and/or the onset of pain at previously asymptomatic sites has been reported. At 5 mg/kg/day about 1 patient in 10 (versus 1 in 15 in the placebo group) report these phenomena. At higher doses the incidence rises to about 2 in 10. When therapy continues, pain resolves in some patients but persists in others.

Heterotopic Ossification

No specific adverse reactions.

Worldwide Post-Marketing Experience

The worldwide post-marketing experience for etidronate disodium reflects its use in the following approved indications: Paget's disease, heterotopic ossification, and hypercalcemia of malignancy. It also reflects the use of etidronate disodium for osteoporosis where approved in countries outside the US. Other adverse events that have been reported and were thought to be possibly related to etidronate disodium include the following: alopecia; arthropathies, including arthralgia and arthritis; bone fracture; esophagitis; glossitis; hypersensitivity reactions, including angioedema, follicular eruption, macular rash, maculopapular rash, pruritus, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis, and urticaria; osteomalacia; neuropsychiatric events, including amnesia, confusion, depression, and hallucination; and paresthesias.

In patients receiving etidronate disodium, there have been rare reports of agranulocytosis, pancytopenia, and a report of leukopenia with recurrence on rechallenge. In addition, there have been rare reports of exacerbation of asthma. Exacerbation of existing peptic ulcer disease including perforation has been reported rarely.

In osteoporosis clinical trials, headache, gastritis, leg cramps, and arthralgia occurred at a significantly greater incidence in patients who received etidronate as compared with those who received placebo.

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Didronel (Etidronate Disodium)

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© Didronel Patient Information is supplied by Cerner Multum, Inc. and Didronel Consumer information is supplied by First Databank, Inc., used under license and subject to their respective copyrights.

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