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Calcitonin Topical



Calcitonin nasal spray is used in the treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis in women who have been in menopause for at least 5 years.

How it works

Calcitonin belongs to the class of medications called as hormones. Calcitonin as a supplement lowers the levels of calcium in the blood thereby increasing the deposition of calcium and phosphate in the bones. It is also helpful to reverse bone loss and may help in bone formation.

Common side effects

Nose bleed, Allergic reaction, Redness of skin, Crusting in eyelids, Sneezing, Itching, Nasal congestion, Running nose, Nasal dryness, Nasal irritation, Sore throat, Headache


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Expert advice

  • Consult your doctor and discontinue the calcitonin intranasal use if you develop severe ulcerations.
  • Inform your doctor if you have high levels of calcium in your blood (hypercalcemia).
  • Inform your doctor if you have any nasal or sinus problems such as nasal deformities, a chronic infection, or nasal pain.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or are breastfeeding.
  • Do not use if you are allergic to calcitonin or to any of its ingredients. 

Frequently asked questions

Calcitonin Topical

 Q. Is calcitonin a steroid hormone/ peptide hormone/ bisphosphonate/ thyroid hormone?
Calcitonin is not a steroid hormone or a bisphosphonate. It occurs naturally in the body and is commercially available in the polypeptide hormone.
Q. Is calcitonin effective for osteoporosis?
Calcitonin is a naturally occurring thyroid hormone which is used to prevent and to treat thinning and weakening of the bone (osteoporosis) in post-menopausal women. 
Q. Does calcitonin stimulate osteoclasts/ Inhibit osteoblast activity/ stimulate bone growth?
Osteoclast is a type of bone cell which carries out dissolution and absorption of bone. Calcitonin is a naturally occurring hormone secreted by thyroid gland in the body, which stops the activity of osteoclasts, thereby stopping bone removal by the osteoclasts. Whether calcitonin stimulates or promotes the bone formation or resorption by the osteoblasts is uncertain.
Q. Does calcitonin cause cancer? 
Long term treatment with calcitonin for osteoporosis and osteoarthritis has shown an increase in the risk of cancer in clinical trials. 
Q. Does calcitonin increases calcium levels?
Calcitonin does not increase calcium levels. It is a naturally occurring hormone secreted by the thyroid gland in the body, which is used to reduce high calcium levels in the blood (hypercalcemia) due to cancer.
Q. Does calcitonin decreases phosphate?
Yes, calcitonin decreases phosphate resorption by direct action on the kidney.

Content on this page was last updated on 30 September, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)