Discussions that mention zometa

Osteoporosis board


Hello Fran, we're in the same club. BC survivor going on nine years, though I don't have any thyroid problems.

For breast cancer prevention, I was going to switch to one of the aromatase inhibitors after five years of tamoxifen, so I had my first DXA and that's when it was discovered that I already had osteoporosis in my spine and osteopenia in my hips. My onc then wanted to give me infusions of Zometa, which is the same thing as Reclast. I decided not to do it, 1) because my insurance copay was still very high, and 2) because of the ONJ (osteonecrosis of the jaw), a rare but serious side effect. I ended up taking Evista instead, and last month I added Boniva to my regimen after a DXA showed my bone density had worsened.

From what I understand, ONJ is caused by temporary or permanent loss of blood supply to the jaw. Symptoms may lie dormant for weeks or months after onset, and then manifest after a dental procedure which exposes the jaw bone, such as tooth extraction or other oral surgery. The risk of ONJ increases with repeated treatments, so it might not be too late to have your dental work done. If it's just a matter of putting a new crown on, you shouldn't have any problems anyway. But it sounds like you may need an extraction, so you have to discuss it with your dentist first. Good luck and let us know what your dentist says.