September 3, 2014

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CO Etidrocal

(etidronate - calcium carbonate)

DIN (Drug Identification Number)


What side effects are possible with CO Etidrocal?

Many medications can cause side effects. A side effect is an unwanted response to a medication when it is taken in normal doses. Side effects can be mild or severe, temporary or permanent.

The side effects listed below are not experienced by everyone who takes this medication. If you are concerned about side effects, discuss the risks and benefits of this medication with your doctor.

The following side effects have been reported by at least 1% of people taking this medication. Many of these side effects can be managed, and some may go away on their own over time.

Contact your doctor if you experience these side effects and they are severe or bothersome. Your pharmacist may be able to advise you on managing side effects.

  • diarrhea
  • dizziness
  • flatulence
  • headache
  • heartburn
  • nausea

Although most of the side effects listed below don't happen very often, they could lead to serious problems if you do not seek medical attention.

Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:

  • bone fractures, especially of the thigh bone
  • hives
  • skin rash or itching
  • swelling of the arms, face, legs, lips, throat, or tongue

Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:

  • blood disorders with symptoms of bleeding, bruising and increased infection
  • pain and swelling of the tongue or esophagus (the tube connecting the mouth and stomach)
  • skin reactions (rash, sores, blisters) involving mucous membranes
  • worsening of asthma
  • worsening of stomach and intestinal ulcers

Some people may experience side effects other than those listed. Check with your doctor if you notice any symptom that worries you while you are taking this medication.

Are there any other precautions or warnings for CO Etidrocal?

Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.


December 19, 2011

Health Canada has issued new restrictions concerning the use of etidronate - calcium carbonate. To read the full Health Canada Advisory, visit Health Canada's web site at

Dental procedures: A dental examination and any necessary dental procedures should be considered before you start treatment with etidronate-calcium if you have one of the following risk factors: cancer; chemotherapy, radiotherapy of the head or neck, treatment with corticosteroids, or dental problems or dental infections.

Gastrointestinal disorder: If you have a gastrointestinal disorder that makes you prone to diarrhea (for example colitis) you may experience increased frequency of bowel movements and diarrhea. Talk to your doctor.

Kidney function: People with reduced kidney function or a history of kidney stones should be closely monitored by their doctor while taking this medication.

Pregnancy: This medication should not be used during pregnancy. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, contact your doctor immediately.

Breast-feeding: It is not known whether etidronate is excreted in human milk. It is not intended for use during breast-feeding. If you are a breast-feeding mother and are taking etidronate, it may affect your baby. Talk to you doctor about whether you should continue breast-feeding.

Children: The safety and effectiveness of using this medication have not been established for children.

What other drugs could interact with CO Etidrocal?

There may be an interaction between the etidronate (first 14 days) portion of etidronate - calcium and any of the following:

  • antacids taken within 2 hours of taking etidronate
  • calcium supplements taken within 2 hours of taking etidronate
  • magnesium-containing products (such as laxatives) taken within 2 hours of taking etidronate
  • vitamins containing minerals such as calcium, iron, and magnesium taken within 2 hours of taking etidronate

There may be an interaction between etidronate - calcium and any of the following:

  • demeclocycline
  • minocycline
  • quinolones (e.g., ciprofloxacin, ofloxacin)
  • sodium polystyrene sulfonate
  • tetracycline
  • warfarin

If you are taking any of these medications, speak with your doctor or pharmacist. Depending on your specific circumstances, your doctor may want you to:

  • stop taking one of the medications,
  • change one of the medications to another,
  • change how you are taking one or both of the medications, or
  • leave everything as is.

An interaction between two medications does not always mean that you must stop taking one of them. Speak to your doctor about how any drug interactions are being managed or should be managed.

Medications other than those listed above may interact with this medication. Tell your doctor or prescriber about all prescription, over-the-counter (non-prescription), and herbal medications you are taking. Also tell them about any supplements you take. Since caffeine, alcohol, the nicotine from cigarettes, or street drugs can affect the action of many medications, you should let your prescriber know if you use them.

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