denosumab (Xgeva)

Pronunciation: den OH sue mab

Brand: Xgeva

What is the most important information I should know about Xgeva?

This medication guide provides information about the Xgeva brand of denosumab. Prolia is another brand of denosumab used to treat osteoporosis in postmenopausal women who have high risk of bone fracture.

You should not receive denosumab if you have low levels of calcium in your blood (hypocalcemia).

Do not use if you are pregnant.

What is denosumab (Xgeva)?

Denosumab is a monoclonal antibody. Monoclonal antibodies are made to target and destroy only certain cells in the body. This may help to protect healthy cells from damage.

The Xgeva brand of denosumab is used to prevent bone fractures and other skeletal conditions in people with tumors that have spread to the bone.

Xgeva is also used to treat giant cell bone tumor in adults and teenagers with fully matured bone structure.

Xgeva is also used to treat high blood levels of calcium caused by cancer, when other medicines such as pamidronate or zoledronic acid (Zometa) have been used without success.

This medication guide provides information about the Xgeva brand of denosumab. Prolia is another brand of denosumab used to treat osteoporosis in postmenopausal women who have high risk of bone fracture.

Denosumab may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before receiving Xgeva?

You should not receive Xgeva if you are allergic to denosumab, or if you have low levels of calcium in your blood (hypocalcemia).

While you are receiving Xgeva, you should not use Prolia, another brand of denosumab.

Tell your doctor if you have kidney disease (or if you are on dialysis).

Denosumab may cause bone loss (osteonecrosis) in the jaw. Symptoms include jaw pain or numbness, red or swollen gums, loose teeth, or slow healing after dental work.

Osteonecrosis of the jaw may be more likely if you have cancer or received chemotherapy, radiation, or steroids. Other risk factors include blood clotting disorders, anemia (low red blood cells), and a pre-existing dental problem.

Denosumab can harm an unborn baby. You may need to have a negative pregnancy test before starting this treatment. Use effective birth control while using this medicine, and for at least 5 months after your last dose.

You should not breast-feed while using denosumab.

How is Xgeva given?

Denosumab is injected under the skin of your stomach, upper thigh, or upper arm. A healthcare provider will give you this injection.

Xgeva is usually given once every 4 weeks.

Your doctor may have you take extra calcium and vitamin D while you are being treated with denosumab. Take only the amount of calcium and vitamin D that your doctor has prescribed.

If you need to have any dental work (especially surgery), tell the dentist ahead of time that you are receiving denosumab.

Pay special attention to your dental hygiene. Brush and floss your teeth regularly while receiving this medication. You may need to have a dental exam before you begin treatment with Xgeva. Follow your doctor's instructions.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Call your doctor for instructions if you miss an appointment for your Xgeva injection.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while receiving Xgeva?

Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.

What are the possible side effects of Xgeva?

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: itching, rash, hives; difficult breathing; feeling like you might pass out; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • new or unusual pain in your thigh, hip, or groin;
  • trouble breathing;
  • low red blood cells (anemia) --pale skin, feeling light-headed or short of breath, rapid heart rate, trouble concentrating; o
  • low levels of calcium in your blood (hypocalcemia) --numbness or tingly feeling around your mouth or in your fingers or toes, muscle tightness or contraction, overactive reflexes.

After you stop using Xgeva, tell your doctor if you have symptoms of high calcium levels (hypercalcemia) such as nausea, vomiting, headache, confusion, lack of energy, or tiredness.

Common side effects may include:

  • feeling weak or tired;
  • nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite;
  • diarrhea, constipation;
  • headache, back pain; or
  • pain or swelling in your arms or legs.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect Xgeva?

Other drugs may interact with denosumab, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Where can I get more information?

Your doctor or pharmacist can provide more information about denosumab (Xgeva).

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