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When and How to Use Denosumab

Some general considerations for when and how to use denosumab include the following:
  • The medication comes in an injectable form. It is injected once every six months (for osteoporosis) or once every four weeks (for preventing cancer-related bone problems), just under the skin, in the abdomen (lower stomach), upper arm, or upper thigh.
  • Your healthcare provider should administer the injections (the product is not designed for at-home use).
  • For osteoporosis treatment, you need to make sure that you get enough calcium and vitamin D while taking denosumab, as the medicine can deplete calcium levels in the blood. Denosumab cannot help the body build bone without calcium and vitamin D. If you are receiving denosumab for cancer, you may (or may not) need calcium and vitamin D, so be sure to check with your healthcare provider. 
  • For the medication to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed. It will not work if you stop taking it.

How Should It Be Stored?

Your healthcare provider should store denosumab in the refrigerator, although the medication may be allowed to reach room temperature before injection (room-temperature injections are usually more comfortable than refrigerated ones). Once the medication is removed from the refrigerator, it must be used within 14 days or discarded.

What Should I Do If I Miss a Dose?

If you do not receive your denosumab as planned, contact your healthcare provider as soon as possible to schedule another dose.

Is There a Generic Version?

At this time, denosumab is not available in generic form (see Generic Prolia and Generic Xgeva).
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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