Senior Health Home > Side Effects of Etidronate
Bone pain, nausea, and diarrhea were the most commonly reported side effects of etidronate in clinical trials. Other side effects that, while occurring infrequently, are potentially serious and should be reported to a healthcare provider immediately include severe muscle pain, hallucinations, and difficulty swallowing. To minimize etidronate side effects on the esophagus, avoid eating or drinking two hours before and after taking the drug.
As with any medicine, side effects are possible with etidronate disodium (Didronel®); however, not everyone who takes the medication will experience side effects. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or can easily be treated by you or your healthcare provider.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with etidronate. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list of etidronate side effects with you.)
Some side effects with etidronate, while occurring infrequently, are potentially serious and should be reported immediately to your healthcare provider. These include, but are not limited to:
- Throat pain, chest pain, or difficulty swallowing (which may be signs of ulcers of the esophagus)
- Severe heartburn or heartburn that does not go away
- Severe bone, muscle, or joint pain
- Soft or weak bones (if the etidronate dosage is too high or is continued too long)
- Jaw or tooth problems
- Depression (see Didronel and Depression)
- Signs of an allergic reaction, including unexplained rash, hives, itching, wheezing, difficulty breathing, and unexplained swelling.