Fosamax® Side Effects
Fosamax® has been associated with both common and serious serious side effects. Common side effects that may occur while taking the drug include muscle, joint or bone pain; headaches, abdominal problems, eye discomfort, rash, or altered taste. Patients should contact a trusted health care provider if they experience any of these symptoms.
Bone And Femur Fractures
Evidence shows that patients who use Fosamax® for more than 5 years have an increased risk of suffering bone fractures, notably in the femur.
In 2010, a report published by a task force of the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research discussed the association between femur fractures and bisphosphonates such as Fosamax®. According to the report, 291 of 310 patients with atypical femur fractures had been treated with a bisphosphonate. Most of the patients had reportedly used the drugs for more than 5 years.
The researchers recommended that the drug label be updated to include a warning about the possible risk of femur fractures. The same day, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an alert to notify patients and heath care providers about the possible risk.
Spontaneous fractures may occur with no apparent cause, where the individual is often initially unaware that a fracture has occured, except for suffering severe pain in the thigh or groin.
While the risk of these fractures are increased with a minor fall, some patients might experience a femur fracture during normal everyday activities.
Symptoms of a femur fracture may include:
- Pain in the thigh, hip and knee
- Swelling in the hip, leg and knee
- Bruising of the thigh
- Leg shortening
- Inability to move the leg
- Difficulty standing
Lawsuits have been filed on behalf of patients who suffered femur fractures after taking Fosamax®. Lawsuits allege the femur fractures are caused by a buildup of Fosamax® in the body.
Osteonecrosis (Dead Jaw)
Osteonecrosis (also known as ONJ or "dead jaw") is debilitating and serious condition in which the jaw bones are unable to heal after trauma. Fosamax® users run the risk of developing osteonecrosis of the jaw and suffering extreme pain associated with the death of jaw bone tissue.
It's important that Fosamax® patients avoid procedures such as tooth extraction or other major dental procedures to avoid the onset of osteonecrosis. In a patient who is suffering from osteonecrosis, exposed bones following dental trauma or surgery will be unable to recover from possible infections, fractures, rotting and eventually the death of bone tissue.
Currently in the United States, approximately 20,000 Americans are diagnosed with osteonecrosis annually. A recent study released in the Journal of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons has caused heightened concern regarding the relationship between Fosamax® and osteonecrosis.
If you have taken Fosamax®, (even in the remote past) and are experiencing any of the following symptoms, you should contact your physician:
- A numb or heavy feeling in the jaw
- Pain and/or swelling of the gums
- The gums are healing poorly after dental work
- A gum infection
- Teeth becoming loose
- Partial or complete loss of jaw bone tissue
This serious side effect has prompted the American Association of Endodonists to issue a warning to dentists regarding patients taking the medication and the potential risk for osteoneocrosis.
According to medical specialists, the most important factor when dealing with osteonecrosis is early treatment and prevention of dental trauma. A doctor can determine if the patient is suffering from osteonecrosis and provide medical treatment.
Severe Pain In Bones, Joints And Muscles
Medical studies and the FDA to have determined that Fosamax® can cause severe and often incapacitating pain in the bones, joints and/or muscles. The pain may begin within days of starting treatment, but in some cases it does not commence for months or years.
Speak With A Fosamax® Lawyer
If you've been prescribed the drug Fosamax®, and suffered a serious injury such as a femur fracture or dead jaw, you may entitled to compensation for medical expenses and pain and suffering. Contact us to speak with a lawyer who specializes in Fosamax® injury cases.