View Full Version : Boniva

05-03-2007, 08:23 PM
Anyone out there taking Boniva for osteoporosis? My GP wants to put me on it after my bone density test came back and I'm reluctant to add yet another drug to my system. Just wondering if anyone has experience with it.

05-04-2007, 08:06 AM
Hey there! I take Actonel, another product similar to Boniva (it's one of those you take once a week - I think Boniva is the one you take once a month - the one Sally Field advertises!) Anyway, my bone density went 'south' after I was on prednisone for a while. It wasn't terrible, but it had gotten considerably worse in comparison to a density test I had pre-prednisone. I am on a LOT of meds and hated to take it too, but there is real risk if your bone density is a problem. Fractures can be life changing - particularly hip fractures. I wouldn't hesitate to take it if your test indicates you have a problem.

I've had no side affects from Actonel and seem to be able to find the 30 minutes in the morning once a week to take it before I take anything else. Some people have some stomach issues with these meds, I guess, but I never have. I haven't had another bone density test since I started taking it. I think my rheumy said she wouldn't retest for a while (that's probably an insurance thing.) Hope this is helpful.


05-04-2007, 09:07 AM
hi there! i take fossomax andhave since the dx in 04, because of my high dose (75-85mg!) of prednisone for such a long time. i hve had no problems. like jody, i dont have a problem finding the time to take it once a week either, even with a 5 yo ladybug.

one tihing though, i love sally field,but it rubs me the wrong way how she, or the company really, implies that finding 30 min is just soooo difficult. there, i feel better now :lol:

be well :wink:

05-04-2007, 11:08 AM
I've been taking the Actonel once a week, but just tried a sample of
the Boniva last week and did not find it much different that the Actonel.
I was already taking Aciphex before I started the Actonel and I think
it helps keep gastric problems to the minimum.
I read an article that they came up with another similar drug that will
be available in th UK in the fall, but you only have to take it once a year!

05-04-2007, 11:24 AM
one tihing though, i love sally field,but it rubs me the wrong way how she, or the company really, implies that finding 30 min is just soooo difficult. there, i feel better now

be well

I know what ya mean about that commercial. I always say to my husband...why is it so hard to "put aside" as they say.. time every week to swallow a pill? It really doesn't take that much time. LOL!

05-04-2007, 05:24 PM
I hear you! Seems ridiculous. I just make sure the pills are sitting in my bathroom on the day I take them, and I take the pill before I get into the shower. By the time I shower and finish getting ready for work, the 30 minutes is done and I'm ready to have breakfast. It's not like I have to plan my day around it, for goodness sake! Yeah, that commercial bugs me too.

05-04-2007, 05:37 PM
EXACTLT!!! he, he!! :lol:

05-05-2007, 08:28 AM
For those of us with lupus, especially if you take prednisone, Actonel is probably the best choice if you are able to take it. Boniva may be more "convenient" (I guess for folks like Sally Field at least), but it has only been shown to reduce the risk of vertebral (spinal)fractures - nothing in the clinical data so far indicates that it reduces the risk of hip or other non-spinal fractures. If you look at the FDA approval data, it is approved only for reducing the risk of vertebral fractures, whereas Actonel is approved to reduce fractures at both vertebral and nonvertebral sites (hip, wrist, pelvis, clavicle, leg, humorous), while Fosamax is approved to reduce risk of vertebral and hip fractures. The FDA and the Federal Trade Commission are actually investigating claims now that Boniva misled comsumers and doctors about its effectiveness after several patients on the drug suffered hip fractures.

In the clinical trials, it took Boniva about two years to show any significant reduction in fracture risk, and about the same length of time for Fosamax - Actonel showed benefits within the first year. For individual patients, there may be medical reasons why one drug would be more appropriate - allergies, idiosyncratic reactions, blood calcium levels, etc.. And as far as I know, there hasn't been a clinical trial so far comparing the effectiveness of the three drugs head-to-head. In the FACT trial (Fosamax Actonel Comparison Trial), Fosamax showed a greater increase in bone mineralization and decrease in bone turnover markers (indicators of bone loss), but it didn't seem to translate into increased fracture reduction. Actonel showed benefits in terms of actual fracture reduction within a year, Fosamax did not.

I guess what I'm saying is all osteoporosis drugs are not created equal. And while veretebral fractures are probably the most common fracture type in postmenopausal women, this isn't true for premenopausal women or men. So please talk to your doctor about which osteoporosis medication offers the most benefits for you.

Lupus in and of itself is a risk factor for osteoporosis - if you take prednisone, that risk is significantly increased. So when you have your bone density tests done, make sure your doctor tests at the spine, hip and ankle! Bone "remodels" at different rates in different spots, so the bone density in your spine may be different from that in your hip. Some doctors just use the portable scanner that tests bone density at the ankle, and this is not a true measure of overall bone density. So please make sure your doctor takes the time to do the test right.

05-05-2007, 03:11 PM
Thanks, Marycain! That explains why my rheumatologist was insistent on Actonel (I must admit, I DID ask about Boniva.) This is all so good to know. I appreciate how thorough you are when you explain this stuff. So valuable.... (and so are you!) :D


05-06-2007, 10:20 PM
here, here marycain!! my old reumie gave fossomax to me and i guess my new one not catch it :? i'll call in the morning!


05-21-2007, 10:18 AM
Be careful about taking any of the calcium supplements you mentioned. I am glad it works out for so many, BUT...be aware that Prednisone increases acid in the stomach already, and that these drugs *may* aggravate acid reflux.It can be VERY damging to the esophagous. Just a warning.
Yah. I find it wierd that Sally makes is sound like 30 minutes is all darn day. :roll: