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Pamidronate Disodium

Date issued: November 2022

For review: November 2024

Ref: F-56/SW/Pain Management/Pamidronate Disodium

PDF:  Pamidronate Disodium final October 2019.pdf[pdf] 275KB

What is Pamidronate?

Pamidronate is a member of a family of drugs called

Bisphosphonates that is most commonly used in conditions affecting bones, such as osteoporosis or Paget’s disease and bones affected by cancer. It may also be used in some patients to treat Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS).

How do Bisphosphonates work?

Bone is constantly being worn away and rebuilt by special bone cells.

Bisphosphonates build up in areas where bone absorption is increased, slow down this process and so can help to reduce pain.

How is it given?

Pamidronate is given as a 3 hour infusion into a vein in the arm. Total dose given is 60mg over 3 hours as a single treatment in the early stages (within 6 months) of developing CRPS.

What are the possible side effects?

Like all medicines Pamidronate may cause some side effects.

These are usually mild and short-lived and do not affect all the patients who receive it.

  1. The most common side effects are: a flu illness, tiredness and headache lasting for 24-48hours. This usually resolves spontaneously and does not                               require treatment other than taking paracetamol.

  2. There can be abdominal cramps and sickness which is self-remitting within first 12 to 24 hours. 

  3. There can be a temporary increase in bone pain which usually improves in a few days.

  4. Other possible side effects include pain and redness at the injection sight, eye irritation, headache, painful veins, and a rash affecting the hands, face, lips or               throat.

You should not be given Pamidronate if:

  • You are pregnant, planning pregnancy in the next 6 months.      

Or breastfeeding

  • You are allergic to pamidronate, any of its ingredients or another bisphosphonate.

Please tell your doctor if you suffer from:

A kidney, heart, liver or thyroid problem or eye inflammation (uveitis or iritis)

Ability to drive/using medicines:

In rare cases sleepiness and dizziness may occur following an intravenous infusion of pamidronate. If this occurs please do not drive or work machinery until these effects wear off. It is advisable to make arrangements for someone to drive you home after the infusion since you should not drive yourself.

Important if you have any concerns please contact

  • Your GP

  • NHS 111

  • Pain Clinic (in office hours)01752 437706

  • Or attend Derriford Hospital Emergency Department

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