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Denosumab is a new treatment that reduces bone breakdown.
Denosumab may be used to lower the risk of fractures and relieve bone pain caused by secondary bone cancers. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE|) has approved its use for the treatment of bone secondaries from breast and other solid tumours except prostate cancer. It’s given as an injection just under the skin (subcutaneously) every four weeks.
Denosumab generally has few side effects. They include a rash, skin changes and osteonecrosis of the jaw.
It can also cause low levels of calcium in the blood. Your doctor will advise you to take calcium and vitamin D supplements to prevent a low calcium level and to strengthen your bones.
Your doctor will be able to tell you more about denosumab if it’s a suitable treatment for you.
Content last reviewed: 1 December 2012
Next planned review: 2014
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