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Comment from: none, 55-64 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: January 26

After four years of waiting, I see that actonel, etc has been found to cause atrial fibrillation - therefore strokes. I am blind in one eye because of a blood clot that I know was caused by actonel. It is about time the drug companies should be blamed for the tragic outcome after using their drugs. I am very angry that the FDA did not test this drug thoroughly enough to find this problem before I took it and changed my life forever.

Related Reading: actonel | atrial fibrillation

Comment from: Florida Girl, 55-64 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: July 05

GYN prescribed Actonel after a DEXASCAN (there was no vitamin D deficiency test, calcium level check or thyroid check). The nurse practitioner said every one of their patients had failed their DEXASCAN that day and were prescribed Actonel (how accurate was the DEXASCAN machine & how competent was the tech). The GYN gave me a free two-month supply of Actonel. I began taking Actonel once a week (on Sunday) in January 2005. Easy to take - I drank two full glasses of water with it just to be sure. By October 2006 my dentist referred me to a periodontist for severe unexplained gum recession. By June 2007 the gum recession was more severe. A bone/jaw scan done in 2000 was compared to a 2007 scan; periodontist stated I had severe bone loss & he could not repair the damage cause by Actonel until I stopped taking it for at least 4 years. He said Actonel stays in your body for 30+ years. I have been under periodontal care (every three months) since October 2006. His main concern: necrosis of the jaw. My other Actonel side effects: severe daily leg & foot cramps (charlie horses), atrial fibrillation (heart palpitations), severe headaches, dizziness, joint, bone & muscle pain, difficult & painful swallowing, cracking & popping of my cervical spine, hair loss & fatigue. My GYN refused to let me discontinue Actonel & maintained it was good for me. On July 1, 2011 I had an endoscopy (I have continual sore throats and LPR - reflux in my throat - and both Prilosec & Aciphex caused severe side-effects). The gastroenterologist found a gastric mucosal abnormality, erythema in the esophagus and hematin (altered blood/coffee-ground-like material) in the stomach. He also biopsied a polyp in the esophagus. If you are otherwise healthy (as I was before starting Actonel), please get a second opinion and request an alternate treatment to Actonel.

Related Reading: actonel | vitamin d | palpitations

Comment from: 55-64 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: October 11

I tried Actonel 35mg-one tablet & and had a lot of side effects. Ulcer-like pain, dizziness, muscle pain etc. I could not use this

Related Reading: dizziness

Comment from: abbadeb, 45-54 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: September 25

having spinal pain, neck to lower back and in left hip. Been on actonel for approx 5 yrs.

Comment from: 55-64 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: October 28

Have taken for 2 years and would have wished for better bone density results

Comment from: 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: September 18

Was on Fosamax but I had stomach problems

Related Reading: fosamax

Comment from: Gymrat, 45-54 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: February 11

I have been taking the 150 mg dose of Actonel for 10 months now and I can't do it anymore! I was fine for the first 4 months and then the symptoms got much worse. I've had nausea, horrible stomach cramps, diarrhea, fever of 101, chills, aching joints and stools that smell like death! And they are lasting longer and longer, now up to 10 days out of the month. The latest addition was being awakened with a pain in my chest that felt like a heart attack, but thank the Lord wasn't. But I now have intermittent stabbing pains under my ribcage, which I'm not sure will go away. I haven't had a bone scan yet so I don't even know if it's working. I work out 2 hours a day, six days a week doing cardio and weights and I eat right. But my mother and grandmother both have severe osteoporosis so I guess I'm just doomed. My mother took Forteo and swears by it, but I'm not sure if my insurance company will go for that. Isn't it awful that they can dictate what drugs we can take? My Doctor scared me into taking this by telling me it was in my spine and any breaks would put an end to my active lifestyle; but this drug is doing it's best to do that anyway. It's hard to do a good work-out when you can't get to the gym because you have flu-like symptoms for days on end. Of course I've lost a little weight because of the burning in my stomach and intestines! Maybe it has given me an ulcer! I just wish there was something on the market that actually worked without making me want to die!

Related Reading: diarrhea | fever | heart attack

Comment from: Pray4me!, 45-54 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: October 16

Actonel, has terrible side effects!!! I was (still am) very sick from the side effects. The first day, I had chills (shaking), fever 102, vomitting, aches/pain in my joints & back. I thought i had the Flu or Mono!!! My health was so bad, i had to go to the ER 3 times. By, the 3rd time, i had a migraine headache for days, then my speech & thoughts delayed. Then, i kept loosing my balance. The ER doctor thought that i had i am still sick, my finger, throat, nose & ears are numb. I have an appt w/ doctor (Neurologist), to make sure that this condition isn't permanent. Please don't take this drug, before doing your research!!!!!!!!! BEWARE!!!!

Related Reading: actonel | fever | flu

Comment from: 65-74 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: September 18

PAIN to the point that the quality of life is NIL. Have to use a walker. Having tooth loss (loosening and falling out. perfecly healthy teeth) According to dentist I do not have gum desease.

Comment from: Kathie, 55-64 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: July 31

I have not had any side effects and have been taking Actonel for nearly 5 years. My last bone scan showed an improvement.

Comment from: Neveragain, 25-34 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: September 01

I took Acotonel for 2.5 years. My bone density has increased but not significantly and I started to develop Acute Uveitis and stiffening of the joints. At times I was in so much pain that I was hospitalised. Since I came off the medication 1 year ago I have had decreasing joint pain and am now virtually pain free. However I have been left with recurrent Uveitis of the eye and have attacks every couple of months. I am told that this may decrease in time but nobody is sure. The Uveitis controls my life, makes it difficult to work and confines me to the darkness during the attacks. I am 29 and sometimes wonder how much longer I will have to suffer for. If I had been made fully aware of the risks in taking this drug I would have run my risks with the Osteoporosis. Recurrent Uveitis is far worse.

Related Reading: uveitis | osteoporosis

Comment from: jojo, 55-64 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: January 23

Took one monthly dose--will not repeat. Felt like i had been hit by a Mack truck--every muscle and bone in my body ached for 4 days. Even hurt to breathe. I have had the flu that did not bowl me over as bad as this. Approved by the FDA--Ha! It's a joke.

Related Reading: flu

Comment from: paintheass, 45-54 Female on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: June 23

I've just started Actonel treatment on Saturday morning, did everything by the book. then hell came saturday night. Severe muscle aches everywhere. Chills follow by sweating. upset stomach, light-headed and no strenght to go up and down steps with general lost of appetite. 48 hours later although not 100%, but finally well enough to step out of the house. Did the drug maker consider all these side effects before manufacturing the pill for $90 a pop? Not sure if I should take my chances with the rest of meds or insist on some other method.

Comment from: 55-64 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: October 21

I've been using it for 6 wks and the side effects are really bothering me - joint pain, back pain, trouble swallowing, dizziness

Related Reading: dizziness

Comment from: BC08/03/09, 55-64 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: August 03

I took Actonel first thing Sat morning. After 1 hour, I had stomach cramps & lower back pain. By nightime, I was nauseated, upper and lower back hurt, and cramps. Sunday was much worse. All the above plus my chest hurt so bad I couldn't lift my arms. The pain went through to my back. I had to take pain medication. Monday morning the chest pain and back pains are better but still have stomach cramps. I hope I live another day. I would never recommend this medicine.

Related Reading: lower back pain | chest pain


What is another medical term for osteoporosis? See Answer
Comment from: workinggrandma, 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: November 20

I took this for a period of two months and experienced severe headaches at the base of my scull/top of spine for two days after each weekly dose in addition to random bone and joint pain.

Comment from: AZmenopause, 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: August 21

My endocrinologist prescribed actonel 150 mg to go along with atenolol 50 mg to treat hypertension. I was leaving his appointment when he decided to have the assistant re-take my blood pressure and that's when he discovered that my bp shot way up (in just a few minutes' time) and is the reason why he changed my diagnosis from simply high bp to hypertension. Okay so he prescribed this actonel and after 4 mos. of taking it (once/mo)I can report that the day I take the pill I begin to feel lousy - tightening of the chest, headache, some neck pain and nausea. I actually did not associate this with the pill until I researched online for side effects of actonel. You can deduce what you want, but I wanted to share this info with others in case it helps b/c "chest pain" is not listed with the other typical side effects. I feel it is related to actonel because I did not have these symptoms prior to taking actonel. I wish you well! <><

Related Reading: actonel | atenolol | headache

Comment from: 45-54 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: November 22

I took my first dose of 150mg on 11/19 felt fine until about 6pm chills and a fever of 102, terrible headache and back pain. Vomited once. Slept most of 11/20 and the back pain and headache were terrible. I will not take another pill of this!

Related Reading: fever

Comment from: norma, 65-74 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: August 02

Took the medication for the first time yesterday. After 24 hours I feel like I have the flu and have back pain as well. After reading all the reviews I realize these are side effects of the drug and I will not take it again. Life is too short to feel so sick

Related Reading: flu

Comment from: Mary , 45-54 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: May 28

I have been off the weekly Actonel for five months now and my symptoms have lessened considerably. While on it ( I took it for one year) I had bone, muscle and joint pain. I still have joint pain (mostly in my hips) but not nearly as severe as before. I am beginning to think I will get over all these bad side effects. I don't know the state of my bone density but I have been reading other articles that suggest these drugs don't really build your bones properly. I increased my calcium intake and began walking at least two miles every day. Unless I turn into the hunchback of Notre Dame I plan to stay off these drugs forever.

Related Reading: actonel

Comment from: pearls 2147, 55-64 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: November 11

I have been taking monthly dose for 6 months but can no longer stand the horrible side effects; fever, chills, vomiting, severe bone and muscle pain as well as 20 pound weight loss. Side effects do not outweigh benefit when you feel so bad and can't function for days after taking what is supposed to help prevent further bone loss. Back to Calcium tablets for me- the misery is not worth it.

Comment from: rose, 35-44 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: November 25

35 year old female:My first dose of Actonel Saturday 10/25/08 8:00am. Was afraid to take it after reading the side effects, with good reason. I had no reaction all day Saturday, but come Sunday morning the pain in my body woke me up at about 6:00am. Felt like flu-like body aches which became extremely worse. By 9:00 am I could not move. It felt like I'd been run over by a truck and on top of that someone had beat me with a bat. Also had mild diahrrea stomach pain, fever and several other side effects. Called my Dr and she suggested taking a different drug the following month. Still afraid of taking other meds since they all have very similar side effects. I'm suppose to take my next dose tomorrow 11/25/08. Not looking forward to spending the Holidays in pain. Wondering if the benefits outweigh the risk.Or are side effects worse than having osteoporisis. Can't afford to be out of work 3 to 4 days each month. Trying to read all there is in terms of treatment, risks, and benefits to determine wether or not I will continue with the treatment.

Comment from: unknown, 55-64 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: November 27

I have been blind in one eye from a blood clot which blocked my macular artery, causing permanent retina damage, for 7 years. I just read that another woman in my age group suffered the same devastating outcome of Actonel use. I have absolutely no risk factors for a blood clot or stroke, and lost my vision after 11 weeks of actonel use. My life has been permanently damaged with this disability. The FDA needs to intervene and pull this dangerous drug from the market. Please do not take this medication!

Related Reading: stroke

Comment from: cheated lady, 55-64 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: March 07

I had been on Actonel for 2 years and had a severe leg fracture, was diagnosed osteoporosis. Was placed on Forteo for 2 years with significant bone improvement. Was placed back on expensive Actonel for further 2 year. I developed severe upper GI problems and my bone density DECREASED to a lower level than when first diagnosed. This drug has awful side affects, costly, and has not helped my osteoporosis. I would not recommend it because it does not work.

Related Reading: actonel | osteoporosis | forteo

Comment from: dgt551, 55-64 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: June 18

Within 24 hrs of taking my first monthly dose of Actonel, I suffered excruciating muscle, joint, and back pain, as well as low fever. The muscle pain, joint pain and fever lasted about 48 hrs. A week later, the back pain persists off and on, of such intensity that I am unable to move when it strikes. It now seems to be centered around the area of the left kidney, and the pain radiates up the spine and around the ribcage. When my back is not hurting, I feel fine; the pain is now striking while I sleep, and I wake in agony. I have already discontinued taking Actonel. I had never before suffered any form of back pain, and the only thing I did that was different from normal was to take that pill; therefore, I know the Actonel is the cause of the pain.

Related Reading: fever


Osteoporosis Super-Foods for Strong Bones With Pictures See Slideshow

Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

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