Bisphosphonate agents for the management of pain secondary to bone metastases: a systematic review of effectiveness and safety

Wong R, Shukla V K, Mensinkai S, Wiffen P
Record ID 32004000170
English, French
Authors' objectives:

This review aims to determine the effectiveness and safety of specific bisphosphonates in the management of pain for patients with bone metastases, compared to placebo or other analgesic alternatives.

Authors' recommendations: - Bisphosphonates modestly reduce pain in patients with bone metastases within 12 weeks of treatment. - There is no evidence that can be used to determine the most efficacious dosage regimen or the type of bisphosphonate agent to use. - Bisphosphonates are generally well tolerated, nausea and vomiting being the most common adverse effects. - The circumstances under which bisphosphonates should be used remain unclear. This review supports the current practice of using bisphosphonates for pain relief in palliative care or in pain clinics, when other treatments are ineffective. The widespread use of bisphosphonates in patients with mild or localized pain, however, may be inappropriate.
Authors' methods: Systematic review
Project Status: Completed
URL for project:
Year Published: 2004
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Not Assigned
Country: Canada
MeSH Terms
  • Bone Neoplasms
  • Diphosphonates
  • Pain
Organisation Name: Canadian Coordinating Office for Health Technology Assessment
Contact Address: 600-865 Carling Avenue, Ottawa, ON K1S 5S8 Canada. Tel: +1 613 226 2553, Fax: +1 613 226 5392;
Contact Name:
Contact Email:
Copyright: Canadian Coordinating Office for Health Technology Assessment (CCOHTA)
This is a bibliographic record of a published health technology assessment from a member of INAHTA or other HTA producer. No evaluation of the quality of this assessment has been made for the HTA database.