- Type of Drug: Peptide hormone.
- Prescribed for: Osteoporosis (bone calcium depletion) in women who have gone through menopause. Calcitonin is also used for Paget’s disease of bone.
Calcitonin is a naturally occuring hormone, produced within the thyroid gland, that has a role in helping to regulate calcium and bone production and maintenance in the body. It also directly affects calcium in the body by working on the kidneys and gastrointestinal (GI) tract. The Calcitonin used in this product comes from salmon; although it is essentially identical to human calcitonin, it is much more potent. Calcitonin helps to drive calcium into bone, strengthening it, and slows the natural process in which bone is naturally broken down (resorption). People with osteoporosis have low bone mass and a deteriorated bone structure, causing bone to be brittle and easily broken. People with osteoporosis also experience fractures of their vertebrae (back bones) that are associated with back pain and a loss of height. Calcitonin helps reverse these situations. Calcitonin has been available for some years as an injection, but the nasal spray makes it easier to use and more accessible for the average person.
Cautions and Warnings
This drug should not be used if you are sensitive or allergic to salmon Calcitonin. Because Calcitonin is a naturally derived hormone, allergic reactions are possible, but none have been experienced to date with the nasal spray. Serious allergic reactions were reported with the injectable form of salmon Calcitonin.
Changes in the lining of your nose are possible with extended use of this product. Periodic nasal examinations are recommended.
Possible Side Effects
- Most common: stuffy and runny nose and other nasal symptoms, and back pain.
- Less common: flulike symptoms, fatigue, red rash, muscle aches, joint problems, sinus irritation, upper respiratory infection, bronchial spasm, high blood pressure, angina pain, upset stomach, constipation, abdominal pains, nausea, diarrhea, cystitis, dizziness, tingling in the hands or feet, eye tearing, red eyes, swollen lymph glands, infections, and depression.
- Rare: swelling around the eyes, fever, skin ulcers, eczema, baldness, itching, sweating, arthritis, stiffness, sore throat, bronchitis, pneumonia, coughing, breathing difficulty, taste and smell changes (including phantom smells), rapid heartbeat, heart palpitation, heart attack, vomiting, stomach gas,, increased appetite, gastric irritation, dry mouth, hepatitis, thirst, gallstones, weight gain, goiter, overactive thyroid, blood in the urine, urinary infection, fainting, migraines, nerve pain, urine, urinary infection, fainting, migraines, nerve pain, agitation, hearing loss, ringing or buzzing in the ears, earache, blurred vision, particles floating (floaters) in eye fluid, flushing, stroke, vein irritation, anemia, sleeplessness, anxiety, appetite loss.
No drug interactions have been found with the ingredients in this nasal spray.
Adult: one puff (200 I.U.) per day.
Child: not recommended.
No cases of Calcitonin nasal spray overdose have been reported, and no adverse effects have been reported after high doses. Call your local poison center for more information. Overdose victims should be taken to a hospital emergency room for treatment. ALWAYS bring the medicine bottle with you.
Alternate nostrils every day when using this nasal spray.
Before you take the first dose of this product, you must activate the pump. Hold the bottle upright and press the 2 white arms toward the bottle 6 times until a faint spray is emitted. Once you have seen the spray, the pump is activated and can be used. It is not necessary to reactivate the pump every day.
If you forget a dose of Calcitonin nasal spray, take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the forgotten dose and continue with your regular schedule.
Call your doctor if you forget your medicine for 2 or more days or if you develop a severe nose irritation or any other unusual or intolerable symptom.
Animal studies have associated injectable salmon Calcitonin with Jow birth weight, but Calcitonin does not cross into the baby’s blood circulation. This product is not recommended for use during pregnancy: It should be used only if the possible benefits of taking it outweigh the risks.
Animal studies have shown that Calcitonin reduces the amount of milk produced, but it is not known if Calcitonin passes into breast milk. Nursing mothers who must use Calcitonin should discuss it with their doctor.
Studies of salmon Calcitonin have included people up to age 77. Seniors may use this product without special restriction.