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Is zoledronic acid available in India?

Q: I am a 56 years old female. I came to know from your newsletter about the injection of zoledronic acid for the relief of osteoporosis patients. I want to know whether this injection can be taken for knees? Is it available in India? How much does it cost?

A:Zoledronic acid is sold in India under the brand name of Zometa and costs Rs. 13,900 for a vial of 4 mg. It is indicated for the treatment of high calcium levels in malignant disorders. In other words, it reduces the calcium levels in the blood. It has recently been approved in the United States for the treatment of osteoporosis in post-menopausal women at a dose of 5 mg per year. The injection is to be given by intravenous infusion over 15 minutes under strict medical supervision. Since many women with osteoporosis may be already short of calcium and vitamin D, it is recommended that these supplements should be given if Zometa is used.

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