What is Fortical (calcitonin)?
Fortical® (calcitonin) nasal spray is a once-daily nasal spray intended only for women who have osteoporosis, have been postmenopausal for at least five years, have adequate calcium intake and cannot take estrogens.
Fortical® (calcitonin) replaces the naturally occurring hormone calcitonin which in involved in bone formation. Fortical® helps slow bone loss and offers some pain relief as well. Fortical® works best to prevent bone loss when taken with calcium and vitamin D. A synthetic form of calcitonin, Fortical® is more potent and longer lasting than the human version.
What should I know about Fortical (calcitonin) before taking it?
Fortical® (calcitonin) can decrease calcium levels in the blood. Fortical® can cause reduced lithium blood levels in patients previously stable on lithium. Fortical® should not be taken by women who are pregnant or nursing. Do not use other nasal sprays while using Fortical. This can increase the chance of nasal irritation and sores.
What are the side effects of Fortical (calcitonin)?
The most common side effects of Fortical® (calcitonin) include: mild cases of back pain; nasal redness, crusting or irritation; and runny or stuffy nose. Other less common side effects include: hypertension; infections of the upper respiratory system, sinuses and bladder; diarrhea or constipation; nausea, dizziness, indigestion or heartburn; and unusual tingling sensations. Serious side effects that should be brought to your doctor's attention include: allergic reactions, such as facial swelling or hives; severe nasal irritation or nosebleeds; and depression. As with any medication, there is a possibility of rare side effects. These include: cough, gas, dry mouth, increased appetite, weight gain, hair loss, hearing loss or ringing in the ears, blurred vision, bronchitis or pneumonia, eczema, sweating, flushing, kidney stones, insomnia, anemia, hyperthyroidism, bloody urine, urination urgency, swollen glands, wheezing, changes in taste and migraines. If you experience any of these rare symptoms, or flu-like symptoms, you should consult your doctor.
How does Fortical (calcitonin) affect allergies?
Fortical® (calcitonin), a man-made hormone, may trigger allergies. Your doctor may first test for allergies. Since it is synthesized from salmon calcitonin, discuss salmon allergies with your doctor. You may need to avoid other nasal sprays or medicines. Your doctor may check your nasal passages regularly. This ensures that the inside of your nose isn't being harmed. Mention any nasal or sinus problems. These include pain, deformities and chronic infections. Other symptoms may include:
Feeling light-headed or faint (if this occurs, contact your doctor immediately).
How does Fortical (calcitonin) interact with other medications or foods?
As with any medication, Fortical® (calcitonin) can interact negatively when used in conjunction with other medications, so be certain to discuss with your doctor all medications and supplements you are taking, before beginning Fortical treatment.
Is there a generic version of Fortical (calcitonin)?
Generic versions of Fortical® (calcitonin) will be available February 2021 at the earliest, when the initial patent expires.
If you're looking for more specific answers to specific questions, ask a Walgreens pharmacist here.