Immobilization hypercalcemia treatment with pamidronate disodium after spinal cord injury

Teresa L. Massagli, Diana D. Cardenas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Objective: To review the use of pamidronate to treat immobilization hypercalcemia after acute spinal cord injury (SCI) in 9 cases. Design: Retrospective case series. Setting: Two inpatient rehabilitation programs, one pediatric and one adult, in the Northwest Regional Spinal Cord Injury System. Patients: Patients with acute SCI who developed immobilization hypercalcemia that was treated with pamidronate. Results: Nine patients (7 men, 2 women), ages 15 to 41yrs, with SCI (8 tetraplegia, 1 paraplegia) were treated using pamidronate between 1994 and 1998. A single dose of 60mg of pamidronate resolved the hypercalcemia or its symptoms in 7 (78%) patients within days. One patient required a second dose (90mg) and one patient required three additional doses (the fourth at 90mg) to achieve resolution of the hypercalcemia or symptoms. Side effects were mild and included drug- related fever in one patient and transient asymptomatic hypocalcemia in four patients. Conclusion: Pamidronate was effective in treating immobilization hypercalcemia caused by SCI. Its advantages include its effectiveness, the duration of treatment, ease of administration, and elimination of the need for long-term intravenous saline or daily medications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)998-1000
Number of pages3
JournalArchives of physical medicine and rehabilitation
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation


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