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Symptom Checker

Step 4: Read and complete the decision guide to learn more about your symptoms.

Jaw, Gum, or Tooth Pain

Okay. We ask because it's been recently recognized that certain medications (called bisphosphonates) may be related to a rare, but serious jaw bone problem (called osteonecrosis of the jaw, or ONJ). ONJ may cause no symptoms, or it may cause:

- Gum or jaw pain, swelling, or infection

- Gum loss

- Loosening of teeth

- Jaw numbness

- Drainage from the gum

- Visible bone below the gum

Examples of medicines that are rarely associated with ONJ include alendronate (Fosamax), risedronate (Actonel), and ibandronate (Boniva) although ONJ is more common with intravenous members of this drug family, such as zoledronic acid (Zometa), than with oral medicines. Even with the intravenous medicines, this complication is rare.

Since you are taking one of these treatments for your bones, your tooth symptoms could be related to your medication. Contact your doctor right away to discuss this.

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