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    What is Alendronate used for?

    Alendronate is used to prevent and treat certain types of bone loss (osteoporosis), which include postmenopausal osteoporosis and steroid-induced osteoporosis. It belongs to a class of medications called bisphosphonates. This medicine may also be used to treat other conditions as determined by your doctor.

    What is the recommended dosage of Alendronate?

    The dosage of Alendronate prescribed to each patient will vary. Always follow your physician’s instructions and/or the directions on the prescription drug label. The following dosage information includes the common dose of Alendronate. If your dose is different, do not follow the dosage described below unless your physician has approved.

    The recommended dose of Alendronate for treating osteoporosis is 70 mg once weekly or 10 mg once daily. Take this medication in the morning before taking your first food. Swallow the tablet whole. After taking the medicine, do not lie down or recline for at least 30 minutes.

    What if you miss a dose of Alendronate?

    If you take Alendronate once daily and if you have missed to take this medicine first thing in the morning, do not take it later in the day. Skip the missed dose and take the medicine in the following morning. Do not take two tablets in one day.

    If you take Alendronate on a once-weekly basis and if you have missed to take it on your scheduled day, then take it first thing in the morning on the day after you remember the missed dose. Then go back to your regular weekly schedule. Do not take two tablets in one day.

    What if you overdose on Alendronate?

    Any medication taken in excess can have serious consequences. If you suspect an overdose of Alendronate, seek medical attention immediately. Some of the overdose symptoms of this drug are stomach pain, diarrhea, muscle cramps, convulsions, nausea, and heartburn.

    What other drugs could interact with Alendronate?

    It may be noted that drugs other than those listed above may also interact with Alendronate.

    Usually drug interactions occur when it is taken with another drug or with food. Before you take a medication for a particular ailment, you should inform the health expert about intake of any other medications including non-prescription medications, over-the-counter medicines that may increase the effect of Alendronate, and dietary supplements like vitamins, minerals and herbal, so that the doctor can warn you of any possible drug interactions.

    Alendronate can interact with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids, and hormone replacement medicines.

    Do let your doctor know if you smoke, consume alcohol or caffeinated drinks, or use illegal drugs as these may interfere with the action of your medication. Make sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions you may have, or any family history of medical problems. Do not start or stop using any medicine without consulting your doctor.

    What are the side effects of Alendronate?

    Like other medicines, Alendronate can cause some side effects. If they do occur, the side effects of Alendronate are most likely to be minor and temporary. However, some may be serious and may require the individual to inform the doctor or visit the nearest hospital immediately.

    It is pertinent to note that side effects of Alendronate cannot be anticipated. If any side effects of Alendronate develop or change in intensity, the doctor should be informed as soon as possible.

    Alendronate can cause side effects such as weakness, headache, stomach pain, constipation, diarrhea, gas, nausea, dizziness, and mild heartburn. Some of the serious side effects of this drug are chest pain, jaw pain, severe bone pain, and painful swallowing. This is not a complete list of all side effects. Do concur with your doctor and follow his directions completely when you are taking Alendronate.

    What are the questions to ask your doctor before taking Alendronate?

    Is it possible for me to take Alendronate with other drugs?
    Should certain beverages, foods and other products be avoided when I take Alendronate?
    What are the possible drug interactions of Alendronate?
    How will Alendronate work in my body?
    How should Alendronate be taken?
    How to reduce the risk of Alendronate drug interactions and side effects?

    Note

    The health and medical information provided here is intended to supplement and not substitute for the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacists or other health care professional. Before using Alendronate, tell your doctor if you have an ulcer in your stomach, kidney disease, low blood calcium, and vitamin D deficiency. Also, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, or breast-feeding during treatment.

     

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