Actonel and MenStudies have shown that Actonel can help increase bone mineral density in men with osteoporosis as well. Studies have not shown that the drug prevents broken bones in men, however. This is most likely due to the small number of men in Actonel studies (since studies need many people in order to shown any changes in the frequency of broken bones).
Actonel and SteroidsOsteoporosis is one of the side effects of long-term use of steroids, such as prednisone. Studies have shown that Actonel can both treat and prevent osteoporosis in people who take steroids. In these studies, the drug increased bone mineral density and prevented broken bones.
Actonel and Paget's DiseaseOne way to assess the severity of Paget's disease is by measuring the level of alkaline phosphate in the blood. In studies, Actonel was shown to decrease alkaline phosphate levels, which indicates that it helps to improve Paget's disease. Studies compared Actonel with Didronel® (etidronate), a similar medication used to treat Paget's disease. Up to 77 percent of people taking Actonel achieved normal alkaline phosphate levels, compared to just 10.5 percent of those taking Didronel.
When and How to Take ItGeneral considerations for when and how to take Actonel include the following:
- The medication comes in tablet form. Depending on the dose, it is taken by mouth daily, weekly, or monthly. When taken monthly, one tablet is taken daily for two days in a row each month.
- It must be taken first thing in the morning at least 30 minutes before you eat or drink anything (other than water). You must wait at least 30 minutes after taking the medication before eating or drinking anything other than water or taking any medications. Food, beverages, and medications can interact with it and prevent it from being absorbed into the body.
- Take your dosage with plain water only (not coffee, juice, soda, or even mineral water).
- Swallow the tablets whole with a full glass of water while sitting or standing upright. Do not lie down for 30 minutes after taking a dose of this medication. The tablets should not be chewed, broken, or sucked on. These precautions are necessary to prevent the drug from irritating your esophagus.
- You need to make sure you get enough calcium and vitamin D while taking the medication, as it cannot build bone without these substances.
- For the medication to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed. It will not work if you stop taking it.