2 Before you take
Do not take Alendronic Acid tablets and tell your doctor if you:
- are allergic (hypersensitive) to alendronic acid or any of the other ingredients (see section
- have certain disorders of the oesophagus (sometimes called the gullet, it is the tube that
connects your mouth with your stomach)
- are unable to stand or sit upright for at least 30 minutes
- doctor has told you that you have low blood calcium
Alendronic acid should not be given to children and adolescents.
Check with your doctor or pharmacist before taking Alendronic Acid tablets if you:
- suffer from kidney problems
- have any allergies
- have thyroid problems or vitamin D deficiency
- have any swallowing or digestive problems including a history of stomach ulcers or bleeding or are
due to have surgery
- are having treatment for cancer or taking steroids
- have a history of dental disease such as poor dental hygiene or are having dental
- have been told that you have Barrett’s oesophagus (a condition with changes in the cells that
line the lower oesophagus)
Taking other medicines
Please tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking or have recently taken any other medicines,
including medicines obtained without a prescription.
Pregnancy and breast-feeding
Alendronic Acid tablets must not be taken during pregnancy or while breast-feeding.
If you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or are breast-feeding ask your doctor or pharmacist for
advice before taking any medicine.
Driving and using machines
Alendronic acid tablets may cause dizziness. Make sure you are not affected before driving or operating
If you have been told you have an intolerance to some sugars, contact your doctor before taking this medicine,
as it contains a type of sugar called lactose.
3 How to take
Always take Alendronic Acid tablets exactly as your doctor has told you. If you are not sure, check with your
doctor or pharmacist.
One Alendronic Acid tablet is to be taken once a week.
Choose a day of the week to take your tablet that best fits with your normal schedule. After getting up for
the day and at least 30 minutes before taking your first food, beverage or other medicine, swallow your
Alendronic Acid tablet with a full glass of plain water (not less than 200ml or 7 fl. oz).
Side effects involving the oesophagus and stomach increase if Alendronic Acid tablets are not taken
Do not take your tablet with mineral water, coffee, tea or fruit juice.
Do not chew your tablet or allow it to dissolve in your mouth.
After swallowing your tablet do not lie down, stay fully upright (sitting, standing or walking) for at
least 30 minutes, and do not lie down until after your first food of the day.
Do not take Alendronic acid at bedtime or before getting up for the day.
If you develop difficulty or pain upon swallowing, chest pain, or new or worsening heartburn, stop taking
Alendronic acid and contact your doctor.
After swallowing your Alendronic Acid tablet, wait at least 30 minutes before taking your first food,
beverage, or other medication of the day, including antacids, calcium supplements and vitamins.
Alendronic acid is effective only if taken when your stomach is empty.
Maintain good oral hygiene, receive routine dental check ups, and report any symptoms such as dental pain or
If you take more than you should
If you have taken too many tablets drink a full glass of milk and contact your doctor or hospital Accident and
Emergency department immediately.
Symptoms such as heartburn, stomach upset, inflammation of the food pipe or stomach, or ulcers may occur.
Do not make yourself vomit, and do not lie down.
If you forget to take the tablets
If you forget to take a dose of Alendronic acid take the missed tablet the morning after you remember. You
should then continue with your weekly schedule using your chosen day. Do not take a double dose to make up for a
If you stop taking the tablets
It is important that you continue taking Alendronic acid for as long as your doctor prescribes the
Talk to your doctor before you stop taking the tablets and follow their advice.
4 Possible side effects
Like all medicines, Alendronic Acid tablets can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.
Stop taking this medicine and contact your doctor at once if you experience any of the following:
a severe allergic reaction: swelling of the face, lips, tongue and/or throat, possibly causing
difficulty in breathing or swallowing. You should go to your local Accident and Emergency department immediately
as this can be life threatening.
severe skin reactions: Stevens-Johnson syndrome (severe form of skin rash with flushing, fever,
blisters or ulcers) and toxic epidermal necrolysis (severe rash involving
reddening, peeling and swelling of the skin that resembles severe burns).
Tell your doctor if you notice any of the following side effects or notice any other effects not
Very common (occurs in more than 1 in 10 users):
- bone, muscle or joint pain.
Common (occurs in less than 1 in 10 users):
- headache, dizziness, weakness, swelling, feeling of dizziness or spinning (vertigo), hair loss, itching
of the skin, difficulty swallowing, tightening of the stomach muscles, joint swelling
- stomach pain, heartburn, constipation, diarrhoea, indigestion, flatulence, feeling full or bloated,
ulceration of the oesophagus (the tube that connects your mouth with your stomach), acid regurgitation
Uncommon (occurs in less than 1 in 100 users):
- feeling or being sick, taste disturbance, inflammation or pain in the eye or iris, a feeling of general
discomfort and illness, inflammation of the oesophagus, ulceration of the throat, black and/or bloody
- rash, and redness of the skin
Rare (occurs in less than 1 in 1,000 users):
- sensitivity to sunlight, low blood calcium levels
- transient flu-like symptoms (muscle weakness, a general feeling of illness and in rare cases fever)
normally at the beginning of treatment,
- symptoms such as stomach ulcer, some severe, with bleeding have been seen but it is unclear if this is
related to Alendronic Acid tablets
- tightening of the muscle surrounding the oesophagus
- mouth ulcers have occurred when the tablets have been chewed or sucked.
- unusual fracture of the thigh bone particularly in patients on long-term treatment for osteoporosis may
occur rarely. Contact your doctor if you experience pain, weakness or discomfort in your thigh, hip or groin as
this may be an early indication of a possible fracture of the thigh bone.
- fracture of the thigh bone in patients on long-term treatment with alendronic acid. Thigh pain,
weakness or discomfort may be an early indication of a
possible fracture of the thigh bone
- damage to the jaw bone and teeth may occur in patients taking alendronic acid
If you notice any side effects, they get worse, or if you notice any not listed, please tell your doctor or
5 How to store
Keep out of the reach and sight of children.
There are no special precautions for storage.
Do not use Alendronic Acid tablets after the expiry date stated on the pack. The expiry date refers to the
last day of that month.
Medicines should not be disposed of via wastewater or household waste. Ask your pharmacist how to dispose of
medicines no longer required. These measures will help to protect the environment.