Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Feb 14, 2022.
Didronel should be taken as a single, oral dose. As with other bisphosphonates, it is recommended that Didronel should be swallowed with a full glass of water (6 to 8 oz). Patients should not lie down after taking the medication. However, should gastrointestinal discomfort occur, the dose may be divided. To maximize absorption, patients should avoid taking the following items within two hours of dosing:
--Food, especially food high in calcium, such as milk or milk products.
--Vitamins with mineral supplements or antacids which are high in metals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, or aluminum.
Paget's Disease: Initial Treatment Regimens: 5 to 10 mg/kg/day, not to exceed 6 months, or 11 to 20 mg/kg/day, not to exceed 3 months.
The recommended initial dose is 5 mg/kg/day for a period not to exceed 6 months. Doses above 10 mg/kg/day should be reserved for when 1) lower doses are ineffective or 2) there is an overriding need to suppress rapid bone turnover (especially when irreversible neurologic damage is possible) or reduce elevated cardiac output. Doses in excess of 20 mg/kg/day are not recommended.
Retreatment Guidelines: Retreatment should be initiated only after 1) a Didronel-free period of at least 90 days and 2) there is biochemical, symptomatic or other evidence of active disease process. It is advisable to monitor patients every 3 to 6 months although some patients may go drug free for extended periods. Retreatment regimens are the same as for initial treatment. For most patients the original dose will be adequate for retreatment. If not, consideration should be given to increasing the dose within the recommended guidelines.
Heterotopic Ossification: The following treatment regimens have been shown to be effective:
--Total Hip Replacement Patients: 20 mg/kg/day for 1 month before and 3 months after surgery (4 months total).
--Spinal Cord Injured Patients: 20 mg/kg/day for 2 weeks followed by 10 mg/kg/day for 10 weeks (12 weeks total). Didronel therapy should begin as soon as medically feasible following the injury, preferably prior to evidence of heterotopic ossification.
Retreatment has not been studied.
More about Didronel (etidronate)
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- Drug class: bisphosphonates
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