Zoledronic Acid is used to treat bone diseases that occur together with certain types of cancers.
This medicine is also used to treat Paget's disease (a painful bone condition which can cause abnormal bone growth and deformity). It helps to regulate the growth of bone in patients with this disease.
Zoledronic Acid can also be used to strengthen thin and weak bones in people who have or are at risk of osteoporosis. It helps to stop the loss of bone and also helps to increase bone mass.
Zoledronic Acid is to be given intravenously (into the vein). It is delivered directly into the bloodstream via the blood vessel.
Your doctor or nurse will administer the injection for you. The injection is usually given slowly over at least 15 minutes via a drip.
Keep all appointments with your doctor. If you miss an appointment and so miss your injection, arrange for a replacement appointment as soon as possible.
If you miss a dose of your injection, arrange to have it administered as soon as possible.
If you often miss your scheduled injection, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
Alert your doctor if you have kidney disease or low levels of calcium in the blood as Zoledronic Acid may not be suitable for you.
Do not use this medicine if you are pregnant. Zoledronic Acid can cause harm to the unborn baby. Use effective birth control methods while being treated with this medicine.
Do not breastfeed while being treated with this medicine.
Do not use Zoledronic Acid if you are taking other similar medicines such as clodronate, alendronate, risedronate or pamidronate.
Inform your doctor if you have aspirin-sensitive asthma.
Let your doctor know if you previously had thyroid, parathyroid or stomach surgery.
Keep yourself hydrated while being treated with this medicine, but avoid overhydration if you have heart failure.
If you are going for an operation, including minor operations and dental work, always inform your doctor, surgeon or dentist that you are being treated with Zoledronic Acid.
Zoledronic Acid may cause your jaw bones to weaken. You may experience dental problems such as jaw swelling and pain, loose or shaky teeth. It is important to maintain good oral hygiene while being treated with this medicine. Your doctor may recommend that you have a dental check-up before starting you on this medicine.
Inform your doctor and dentist if you:
- develop a tooth infection
- develop pain, numbness or discomfort in your teeth or gums
- have a tooth extraction
You will need to have regular blood tests to monitor your calcium levels, blood counts and kidney function. Your doctor will advise you about how often you need to have these tests.
Your doctor may also advise you take calcium and vitamin D supplements while being treated with Zoledronic Acid.
Zoledronic Acid may also cause drowsiness, tiredness and dizziness. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert.
Other side effects may include any of the following: pain, redness, itching, irritation, swelling and discomfort at the injection site; flu-like symptoms, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, constipation, indigestion, stomach, bone and muscle pain.
Some side effects may need immediate medical help. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience any of the following:
- chest pain
- muscle cramps
- abnormally fast, slow or irregular heartbeat
- back pain
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
- medicines for treating high calcium levels e.g. calcitonin
- aminoglycosides (a group of antibiotics)
- diuretics “water pills” e.g. furosemide
- painkillers of the NSAIDs type e.g. aspirin, diclofenac, naproxen, ibuprofen
This list does not include all the medicines that may interact with Zoledronic Acid.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as Chinese medicine, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Store in a cool, dry place at 15-30 °C. Keep away from the reach of children.
Store the injection in its original carton and protect from light. Light may cause the medication to lose some of its effectiveness. If the injection changes colour, do not use it.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.