Cancer Home > What Is Pamidronate Used For?

Pamidronate is used for treating high blood calcium due to cancer and Paget's disease. It can also be used to prevent or delay bone damage caused by multiple myeloma or breast cancer that has spread to the bone. Off-label pamidronate uses may include the treatment of high blood calcium due to hyperparathyroidism, osteoporosis, and osteogenesis imperfecta. Pamidronate is not approved for use in children.

Pamidronate Uses: An Overview

Pamidronate disodium (Aredia®) is a prescription medication approved for the following uses:
  • To treat Paget's disease of bone
  • To prevent or delay broken bones or other bone damage due to multiple myeloma or breast cancer that has spread to the bone
  • To treat high blood calcium levels due to cancer (known medically as hypercalcemia of malignancy).

Pamidronate for Treating Paget's Disease

Normally, bone is continuously being broken down and rebuilt. Paget's disease of the bone is a condition involving rapid breakdown of bone combined with abnormal reformation of bone. The abnormally reformed bone is weaker than normal. Symptoms of Paget's disease can include pain and bent or broken bones. Bisphosphonates, such as pamidronate, can help slow the breakdown of bone and help the body build bone more normally.
Not all people with Paget's need to be treated with a bisphosphonate. Pamidronate is recommended for people with moderate to severe Paget's disease of bone.

Pamidronate for Preventing Bone Damage

Cancer can affect the bones. Cancer from other parts of the body can spread to the bones, or cancer can start in the bones (such as with multiple myeloma). Either way, cancer can wear away the bone, leading to pain, broken bones, and the need for bone surgery or radiation. If the spinal bones are affected, this can lead to pressure on the spine, causing pain, unusual sensations, loss of bowel or bladder control, or even paralysis.
Pamidronate can help prevent or delay bone damage due to breast cancer that has spread to the bone. It can also help to prevent or delay bone damage due to multiple myeloma, a cancer that affects plasma cells in the bone marrow. It is important to understand that pamidronate is not a chemotherapy medication; it should always be used along with appropriate cancer treatment.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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