Years after HRT was prescribed like aspirin, we know about those lethal side effects, but what about Fosamax? Interestingly, even though the Fosamax website goes on to say that "If you develop severe bone, joint, and/or muscle pain at any time, contact your doctor," it also advises to continue Fosamax to reverse bone loss.
The dental community would disagree. It has begun to realize an association between the use of bisphosphonates - including Fosamax (also known as alendronate) - and osteonecrosis (necrosis, or bone death) of the jaw. BON - Bisphosphonate-associated osteonecrosis - is the acronym given to the symptoms associated with IV bisphosphonate use. BON symptoms include jaw bone pain, loosening of teeth, exposed bone, periodontal infections, and delayed tissue and bone healing.
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Currently, there is no effective treatment to stop the progression of bisphosphonate bone death associated with BON. According to the Royal Adelaide Hospital in Australia, "Discomfort may be eliminated with long-term antibiotic coverage and Peridex Rinse." The hospital refers patients to oral surgeons but surgery is difficult as it often exposes further bone and because bisphosphonates such as Fosamax affect the whole skeleton, "locating viable bone margins may be impossible... Furthermore, removal of painful teeth, while initially alleviating pain, also further exposes bone, causing more pain." Isn't it about time Fosamax added this information to their website?