Tingling sensations in lips or tongue
This can happen if the calcium levelin the blood drops below normal. This is rare and usually only temporary. Your doctor will carry out regular blood tests to monitor the level of calcium in your blood.
Feeling sick (nausea) or being sick (vomiting)
This is usually mild and can be controlled with anti-sickness (anti-emetic) tablets.
Abdominal (tummy) pain, constipation or diarrhoea
This can usually be controlled with medicine, but let your doctor know if it is severe or continues.
Pain or redness at the injection site or painful veins
Let your doctor or nurse know if you have these problems.
Red or sore eyes
Your doctor can prescribe eye drops to ease this.
Change in kidney function
Sometimes pamidronate can affect how the kidneys work. This does not usually cause any symptoms and the effects are generally mild. Your doctor will monitor how well your kidneys are working during your treatment by doing regular blood tests.
This is not common, but it's important to let your doctor know if you are getting headaches. They will advise you about what medicines to take. It's also important to drink plenty of fluids.
Jaw problems (osteonecrosis)
A rare side effect of pamidronate is a condition called osteonecrosis of the jaw. This is when healthy bone tissue in the jaw becomes damaged and dies. Gum disease, problems with your dentures and some dental treatments, such as having a tooth removed, can increase the risk of this. So before you start taking the drug you'll be advised to have a full dental check-up.
During treatment with bisphosphonates, it's very important to look after your teeth by brushing them regularly and having routine dental check-ups. Always let your dentist know that you're taking bisphosphonates. Some of the symptoms of osteonecrosis can include pain, swelling, redness of the gums, loose teeth or a feeling of numbness or heaviness in your jaw. Tell your cancer specialist and dentist straight away if you have any of these symptoms.