Ask the Nurse

My doctor has just started me on Fosamax. What is the latest information on taking this drug long and short term? I have had bone density testing done about four years apart and my doctor says that because of my family history and a change in the thinning of my bones, I am at risk of possible fractures as I age. I am currently 65.

Fosamax belongs to the class of drugs called bisphosphonates and are used in patients for prevention and treatment of osteoporosis at different doses.

This class of medications is very effective both short and long term if taken correctly as prescribed. Fosamax increases both bone mineral density and decreases risk of osteoporotic fractures for at least 10 years.

Most common side effects are gastrointestinal-related, but these side effects can be reduced if the prescription is taken correctly:

  • Fosamax should be taken on an empty stomach first thing in the morning with at least eight ounces of water.
  • You should remain upright for at least 30 minutes after taking the medication.
  • Avoid food or drink for about a half hour to one hour after taking the medication.

All My Best,
Speaking of Women's Health Nurse

December 4, 2012 at 4:41pm