Boniva is a medication that is used for preventing and treating osteoporosis in postmenopausal women. By binding to certain cells in bones, the drug can help prevent vertebral fractures and increase bone mineral density in the spine and hip. Boniva, which is available by prescription, comes in tablet and injectable form. Potential side effects include heartburn, diarrhea, and arm or leg pain.
What Is Boniva?
Boniva® (ibandronate sodium) is a prescription medication used to both treat and prevent osteoporosis in postmenopausal women. It is taken just once a month.
Boniva is made jointly by GlaxoSmithKline and Roche Laboratories.
How Does Boniva Work?
Boniva belongs to a group of medications known as bisphosphonates. The drug binds to certain cells in bones and slows down the rate at which they break down.
Effects of Boniva
Boniva has been evaluated in a large study involving almost 3,000 postmenopausal women with osteoporosis. In this study, the drug reduced the risk of vertebral fractures (broken spinal bones) by about half. Boniva did not seem to reduce the risk of other types of broken bones. It also increased the bone mineral density (a measure of the strength of bones) in the spine and hip.
Boniva can also be used to prevent osteoporosis in postmenopausal women with risk factors for the disease. In studies on osteoporosis prevention, women taking the drug showed increased bone mineral density, while those not taking it actually experienced bone loss.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Boniva [package insert]. South San Francisco, CA: Genentech, Inc.;2011 January.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed April 6, 2012.
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