Medications > Etidronate (Didrocal) > Etidronate (Didrocal) – pictopamphlet
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ETIDRONATE (Didronel, Didrocal) [Ee-tid-ROW-nate]
How to use this medication
Etidronate is a medication used to treat and prevent thinning of the bones (called osteoporosis).
Etidronate is taken in 90-day cycles. For the first 14 days 400 mg of etidronate is taken each day. For the remaining 76 days a 500 mg calcium tablet is taken.
Etidronate should be taken first thing in the morning. Do not lie down after taking the medicine.
Etidronate should be taken on an empty stomach. Wait at least 1 hour before taking any other medication or eating or drinking anything.
Take etidronate with a full glass of water. Do not take it with coffee, juice or tea.
What you need to do
To help build your bones you should take calcium & vitamin D while taking etidronate. Your doctor will tell you the right amount of calcium and vitamin D for you.
Etidronate should not be taken during pregnancy or breastfeeding. Stop the medicine and let your doctor know if you become pregnant while taking etidronate.
Medicines like etidronate have been associated with a very rare problem with the jaw (osteonecrosis). This problem has been seen after dental work. Let your doctor know if you develop sudden pain in the jaw.
Your doctor will monitor your response to etidronate by testing your BMD. This is usually done every 1 to 3 years. Talk to your doctor.
Side effects & important things to know
The most common side effect of etidronate is stomach upset, pain, bloating, and nausea. Etidronate can irritate the lining of the stomach, esophagus, or intestine. This is rare. It can result in stomach pain or trouble swallowing.
When should I call my doctor
- If you feel sick and want to stop
- If you are concerned about any side effects
- If you want to or have already stopped the medicine
Other Reasons to Call your Doctor:
Other important information
You can simply stop taking etidronate. You do not need to wean off it. Please call your doctor if you stop the medication.