Care During Chemotherapy and Beyond
Aredia - Use and Side Effects Information
QUESTION: My mother has breast cancer that has spread to
her bones. She goes for treatment and gets a medication called Aredia. What is the medication Aredia used for?
What are Aredia's side
ANSWER: What happens with some types of cancer is that
cells break away from the original tumor, travel through the bloodstream, and begin
to grow somewhere else in the body. This process is called metastasis. In certain
cancers such as breast, multiple myeloma, kidney or prostate cancers, the bone is
a common site for metastasis. The bone metastases secrete substances that can cause
cells called osteoclasts to dissolve or "eat away" a portion of the bone.
These lesions weaken the bone and can lead to complications. Some of the complications
are bone pain, fractures, and less commonly, calcium levels in the blood can become
dangerously high (hypercalcemia) as a result of the bone breakdown.
one medication that fits into the class of medications called biphosphonates.
Biphosphonate medications are used to slow down the osteoclast's effects on the
bone. In doing this it can be useful in slowing down or preventing the complications
(bone pain, fractures, or high calcium levels) of the bone breakdown.
Biphosphonates may be given while a person is receiving other chemotherapy to treat
cancer, or it may be given alone to treat high calcium levels, or bone pain.
Aredia Side Effects:
Some of the more common side effects that have been reported in studies of patients
taking Aredia were; fatigue, fever, nausea, vomiting, anemia and skeletal pain.
However it is thought that some of these reported side effects of Aredia may
be due to other treatments patients were on or the cancer itself. Sometimes patients
reported muscle and joint pains within 1 to 3 days after the second or third treatment
of Aredia. The doctor may recommend a mild pain reliever that may help prevent
or relieve these symptoms. Aredia is cleared from the body through the kidneys.
Even if a person's kidneys are not working properly, studies show that changes in
the dosage of Aredia should not be necessary. However, Aredia has not been studied
in many patients with severe kidney problems.
Note: We strongly encourage you to talk with your health care professional
about your specific medical condition and treatments. The information contained
in this website is meant to be helpful and educational, but is not a substitute
for medical advice.
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