August 13, 2022

Side effects, alternatives, method of administration, etc.

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about Prolia.

Is Prolia safe to take? Are there any dangers in using this drug?

Studies found that Prolia is generally safe and effective for treating osteoporosis and certain types of bone loss.

For example, in studies, people taking Prolia for 8 years had no significant side effects compared to people taking a placebo. (A placebo is a treatment with no active drug.)

Side effects are possible with the use of Prolia, but in most cases they disappear after a while. Some rare Prolia side effects may be serious and require medical attention. These side effects include:

Your risk as these serious side effects may be more severe if you are older and have certain dental procedures. Your risk may also be higher if you:

Stopping treatment with Prolia may also increase your risk of bone fractures. So if you want to stop taking Prolia, talk to your doctor. He will discuss other treatments with you to help prevent bone loss.

It is recommended to take 400 international units of vitamin D and 1000 milligrams (mg) of calcium with Prolia. This will help you avoid the risk of low calcium levels during treatment.

If you are concerned about side effects from Prolia, talk to your doctor. They can explain the risks and benefits of this medication. And they’ll recommend if it’s the best option for your condition.

Is Prolia a bisphosphonate?

No, Prolia is not a bisphosphonate. Instead, it belongs to a different group of drugs called biologics. (Biological medicines are made from living organisms).

Specifically, Prolia is a monoclonal antibody (a protein made in a laboratory). It works with your immune system to help prevent bone loss.

Bisphosphonates, on the other hand, help increase bone thickness and prevent bone breakdown. They do this by slowing the loss of minerals such as calcium from your bones. They are commonly used to treat osteoporosis. These types of drugs come in forms that are taken by mouth and in forms that are administered by injection.

Here are some examples of bisphosphonates:

If you want to learn more about using a bisphosphonate for your condition, talk to your doctor.

How does Prolia work? And how long does it stay in your system?

Prolia works by preventing osteoclasts (certain bone cells) from breaking down bone tissue in your body. This is the mechanism of action of the drug.

Specifically, Prolia works by blocking a protein called RANK. The drug attaches to the RANK protein and helps prevent osteoclasts from breaking down bone.

Over time, Prolia helps improve the density and strength of your bones by slowing bone loss. This reduces your risk of bone fractures.

You will receive Prolia injections from a healthcare professional once every 6 months. The drug stays in your system and continues to slow bone breakdown during this time. Every 6 months you will receive another dose of Prolia.

How does Prolia compare to Forteo?

Both Prolia and Forteo are used to treat osteoporosis. They have similar uses and side effects, but they also have differences.

These drugs contain different active ingredients and belong to different drug groups. For example:

  • The active ingredient in Prolia is denosumab. It is a biologic drug that works with your immune system to help slow bone loss.
  • The active ingredient in Forteo is teriparatide. It does the same thing as parathyroid hormone, which helps your body produce more bone tissue.

Prolia and Forteo are given as injections under the skin. Forteo is given by self-injection once a day. But Prolia is administered once every 6 months by a medical professional.

No studies have compared these two drugs to each other. But they are all effective in treating osteoporosis and preventing bone loss.

For more information on how these medications compare to each other, ask your doctor. They can tell you more about the benefits and risks of Prolia and Forteo. Your doctor can help you decide which medicine is best for you.

Is Prolia used for osteopenia or arthritis?

Prolia is not approved to treat osteopenia or arthritis.

With osteopenia, your bone mineral density (BMD) is lower than normal. (BMD is a measure of the amount of minerals such as calcium in your bones.) This means your bones may be weaker than normal. As you age, your BMD decreases, which can increase your risk of osteoporosis.

With arthritis, you have joint pain and inflammation. The two most common forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease in which your immune system attacks your joints.

Prolia can be used off-label for rheumatoid arthritis if you have a high risk of bone fractures. (With off-label use, a medicine is used to treat conditions other than those for which it was approved.)

The drug can also be used off-label for osteopenia, but usually you don’t need osteopenia drugs. Instead, your doctor may recommend that you make certain changes to your diet, such as increasing your calcium and vitamin D intake. They may also suggest exercises to help improve your bone strength and lower your risk fractures and osteoporosis.

If you have questions about treatment options for osteopenia or arthritis, talk to your doctor.

Can you ever stop taking Prolia? If so, will you have withdrawal symptoms?

Yes, if your doctor recommends it, you can stop taking Prolia. But it can cause more bone breakdown and increase your risk of bone fractures. In fact, bone breakdown is higher in the first few months after stopping Prolia.

If you want to stop taking Prolia, talk to your doctor. He will discuss with you other treatments to protect you against fractures and bone loss.

Stopping Prolia does not cause withdrawal symptoms. Stopping some medications causes withdrawal symptoms because your body is used to the medication and needs it to make you feel normal. But this is not the case with Prolia.

If you have troublesome or serious side effects or other problems while taking Prolia and need to stop the medicine, your doctor will monitor your bone mineral density. They will also discuss with you how to reduce your risk of fractures by adding other treatments or making certain lifestyle or diet choices.

Does Prolia make you fat?

Studies of Prolia did not report weight gain as a side effect of the drug. But weight gain can happen with other medications you take or other health conditions you have.

If you are concerned about weight gain with Prolia, talk to your doctor. They can give you advice on managing a body weight that is healthy for you.

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