Alendronate sodium is a drug used to treat a type of bone condition called Paget’s disease that weakens and deforms bones, states WebMD. Alendronate helps to delay bone loss and maintains bone strength and reduces the likelihood of breakage. This medication belongs to a class of drugs called bisphosphonates.
Alendronate is also used to treat conditions such as decreased bone mass caused by menopause medications, osteoporosis caused by glucocorticoid medications, post-menopausal osteoporosis and male osteoporosis caused by deficient function of testis medications, according to WebMD.
The side effects of alendronate are rarely serious and include constipation, nausea, stomach pain, diarrhea and gas. Serious irritation and ulcers of the esophagus are experienced occasionally. Severe side effects that include chest pain, aggravated heartburn, and pain or difficulty when swallowing should be reported to a doctor immediately, and the medication should be discontinued, WebMD advises. Allergic reactions to alendronate are rare, but individuals should seek immediate medical help for symptoms that indicate serious reactions such as rashes; itching and swelling of the face, tongue or throat; dizziness and difficulty breathing.
Certain medical conditions can affect the use of alendronate. A doctor or pharmacist should be made aware of the presence of conditions such as anemia, cancer, dental problems, heart-related conditions, kidney problems, surgery, infections, and stomach and bowel problems, states Mayo Clinic.