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Zoledronic Acid Solution for injection [Hypercalcemia of Malignancy]

What is this medicine?

ZOLEDRONIC ACID (ZOE le dron ik AS id) lowers the amount of calcium loss from bone. It is used to treat too much calcium in your blood from cancer. It is also used to prevent complications of cancer that has spread to the bone.

How should I use this medicine?

This medicine is for infusion into a vein. It is given by a health care professional in a hospital or clinic setting.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:

  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue

  • anxiety, confusion, or depression

  • breathing problems

  • changes in vision

  • eye pain

  • feeling faint or lightheaded, falls

  • jaw pain, especially after dental work

  • mouth sores

  • muscle cramps, stiffness, or weakness

  • trouble passing urine or change in the amount of urine

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • bone, joint, or muscle pain

  • constipation

  • diarrhea

  • fever

  • hair loss

  • irritation at site where injected

  • loss of appetite

  • nausea, vomiting

  • stomach upset

  • trouble sleeping

  • trouble swallowing

  • weak or tired

What may interact with this medicine?

  • certain antibiotics given by injection

  • NSAIDs, medicines for pain and inflammation, like ibuprofen or naproxen

  • some diuretics like bumetanide, furosemide

  • teriparatide

  • thalidomide

What if I miss a dose?

It is important not to miss your dose. Call your doctor or health care professional if you are unable to keep an appointment.

Where should I keep my medicine?

This drug is given in a hospital or clinic and will not be stored at home.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • aspirin-sensitive asthma

  • cancer, especially if you are receiving medicines used to treat cancer

  • dental disease or wear dentures

  • infection

  • kidney disease

  • receiving corticosteroids like dexamethasone or prednisone

  • an unusual or allergic reaction to zoledronic acid, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives

  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant

  • breast-feeding

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Visit your doctor or health care professional for regular checkups. It may be some time before you see the benefit from this medicine. Do not stop taking your medicine unless your doctor tells you to. Your doctor may order blood tests or other tests to see how you are doing.

Women should inform their doctor if they wish to become pregnant or think they might be pregnant. There is a potential for serious side effects to an unborn child. Talk to your health care professional or pharmacist for more information.

You should make sure that you get enough calcium and vitamin D while you are taking this medicine. Discuss the foods you eat and the vitamins you take with your health care professional.

Some people who take this medicine have severe bone, joint, and/or muscle pain. This medicine may also increase your risk for jaw problems or a broken thigh bone. Tell your doctor right away if you have severe pain in your jaw, bones, joints, or muscles. Tell your doctor if you have any pain that does not go away or that gets worse.

Tell your dentist and dental surgeon that you are taking this medicine. You should not have major dental surgery while on this medicine. See your dentist to have a dental exam and fix any dental problems before starting this medicine. Take good care of your teeth while on this medicine. Make sure you see your dentist for regular follow-up appointments.

Online Medical Reviewer: Louise Akin, RN, BSN
Online Medical Reviewer: Daphne Pierce-Smith, RN, MSN, FNP, CCRC
Last Review Date: 5/29/2014
© 2000-2014 The StayWell Company, LLC. 780 Township Line Road, Yardley, PA 19067. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.