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Good price, but scared of Fosamax
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Ocelotsden posted:
Well, my doctor really wants me on Fosamax but we lost our health insurance since COBRA ran out. Anyway, just in case it will help someone else here, the generic version (alendronate) was only $24 for three months worth of the once a week pills at Walmart.

I got it, but I'm really scared of the side effects. I just had oral surgery and the dentist said had I have been on it already, he might not have been able to do the surgery.

I'm a 46 year old male, with a -3.11 spine score and a -2.3 hip score. The scores aren't the worst, but I've already fractured FOUR vertebrae in the last several years. She does have me on prescription 5000 units of vitamin D once per week, since my D was a little low. Not a lot, but low. Other than that, we can't figure out what caused the osteoporosis.

Exercise is pretty much out since all the fractures and at least two herniated discs, I'm usually in too much pain to do much of anything.

Anyway, I thought the price on the generic Fosamax might be a help to someone on here.

Ray
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Tomato05 responded:
My dad got skin rashes when he took the generic version, but maybe it will be all right for others.

I had to stop Fosamax, as I needed to get dental implants (and I still get one from time to time), and the dentists refuse to do them if you're on Fosamax. For my first implant I had to stop for about 4 months before they did the dental surgery. I have now stopped taking Fosamax for a few years, so if I need dental surgery it is no problem.

Many dentists won't even do a root canal treatment, not to mention an extraction, if you take Fosamax.

Most people do need dental surgery at some point in their lives (especially as they get older), so it is good to keep it in mind that if you take Fosamax, you may end up needing the dental treatment, but not being able to get it... That could of course be problematic if you have acute toothache!
 
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bonebabe responded:
Sounds like your doctor is on the ball. At your young age, your scores are pretty low. Has she looked for a root cause of the osteoporosis? My brother was 46 also when he had his first test. He immediately went on Actonel, then switched to Reclast. His testing revealed that his alcohol use as a teenager had suppressed his testosterone production which inhibited bone mass buildup.

I can understand your pain from all your back problems, but if you could walk about 1/2 hour each day that would immensely help your bone density. You certainly don't want to do any movements that would involve bending or twisting of the spine. In fact, you might ask your doctor about a referral for PT for some ADL's (Activities of Daily Living) that might reduce your chances of another vertebral fracture.

As for the dental issue, the NOF has some good information about it. In the ISCD accredited osteoporosis center where I've worked for 15 years, the opinion is that there is an overaction response to the bisphosphanates by the dentists. Jaw necrosis is very rare and the meds stay in your system for 10 years. Going off for a few months prior to surgery does nothing by appear to alleviate the dentist's fear of legal action. Check it out at www.nof.org .
 
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NATIONAL OSTEOPOROSIS FOUNDATION
Karen Kemmis, PT, DPT, MS replied to Tomato05's response:
Dear Ocelotsden:

I know you didn't ask for suggestions but I hope you don't mind if I make some. You may benefit from some physical therapy (I expect you have already had some), but specifically from someone who specializes in core stabilization exercises for the spine and who has knowledge of osteoporosis. This might take some phone call interviews to local physical therapy practices. Also, aquatic exercise might be helpful since it would take pressure off of your spine (fracture sites and discs) while you get exercise. Even people who can't swim can do well in the water. Just let the physical therapist or aquatic instructor know your situation. Exercising in the water isn't typically helpful for bone density but it provides so many other benefits.

Also, some people who have compression fractures get great pain relief from a minimally invasive surgery, either kyphoplasty or vertebroplasty. If you haven't already, you might want to investigate these options. It's important to note, however, that these options are not right for everyone. You may also want to download NOF's brochure "Protecting the Fragile Spine" with more information on this topic. It is available at http://www.nof.org/osteoandyourspine .


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