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Etidronate is used in the treatment of post menopausal osteoporosis (porous bones), osteoporosis in men (porous bones) and steroid induced osteoporosis (porous bones).

How it works

Etidronate belongs to a class of drugs called bisphosphonates. It works by slowing the breakdown of old bone and the formation of new bone.

Common side effects

Nausea, Abdominal pain, Back pain, Chest pain, Constipation, Diarrhoea, Difficulty in swallowing, Headache, Muscle pain, Joint pain


Expert advice

• Consume enough calcium and vitamin D and eat a balanced diet while you are taking etidronate.
• Tell your doctor if you have diarrhea, a bone fracture, trouble in swallowing, stomach or esophageal ulcer and/or kidney disease.
• Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or are breastfeeding.
• Patients allergic to etidronate or any of its ingredient.
• Do not take etidronate if you have low blood calcium levels or osteomalacia (softening of the bones).
• Do not take etidronate if you have esophagus problems, including difficulty swallowing or a narrow or blocked esophagus.
• Do not take etidronate if you are unable to stand or sit upright for at least 30 minutes.

Frequently asked questions


Q.What is etidronate used for?
Etidronate is used to treat many conditions related to irregular bone growth

Q.Is tetrasodium etidronate natural?
Etidronate is synthetic, derived from a chemical called phosphonic acid.

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