Compare Boniva vs. Prolia

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Boniva
(ibandronate)

Prolia
(denosumab)

Prevents bone loss. Boniva (ibandronate) is a first-choice treatment for osteoporosis and is available as a generic, but how you have to take it can be a hassle. It's also only approved for women, not men.Prevents bone loss. Prolia (Denosumab) is an effective and convenient treatment for osteoporosis if other options haven’t worked or aren’t appropriate for you. There’re risks of some rare side effects, so make sure you're following up with your doctor regularly.
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Coupons for Boniva
Best available price for 1 (3 tablets of 150mg) dose pack of boniva
Coupons for Prolia
Best available price for 1 (1ml of 60mg/ml) syringe of prolia
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
3.81Boniva
Reviews for Boniva
31%
of people (All ages) say Boniva is worth it
20%
say it works well
27%
say it's a big hassle
Have you used Boniva (ibandronate)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Prolia
33%
-2% worse vs. Boniva
40%
-20% worse vs. Boniva
27%
Same vs. Boniva
Have you used Prolia (denosumab)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
BonivaProlia
  • Abdominal pain 8%
  • High blood pressure 6%
  • Joint pain 6%
  • Indigestion 6%
  • Diarrhea 5%
  • Back pain 5%
  • Nausea 5%
  • Constipation 4%
  • Cold 4%
  • Pain in arms or legs 4%
More Boniva side effects »
  • Pain in extremity 1%
  • Hypercholesterolemia 1%
  • Ankle and leg swelling 1%
  • Ear, nose, or throat infection 1%
  • Sciatica 1%
More Prolia side effects »
How it works
BonivaProlia
Boniva (ibandronate) is a bisphosphonate. It slows down osteoclasts, the cells that break down bone. This results in greater bone mass and lowers the possibility of fractures.Prolia (Denosumab) is a monoclonal antibody. It blocks a protein that sends signals to break down your bones, and therefore prevents bone loss.
Type of medication
BonivaProlia
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
BonivaProlia
  • Pill
  • Injection
  • Injection
Used for
BonivaProlia
Risk factors for serious side effects
BonivaProlia
  • Taking with aspirin or other NSAIDS (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs)
  • History of ulcers, or other stomach or esophageal problems
  • History of difficulty swallowing
  • Unable to sit upright or stand for 60 minutes after taking the medicine
  • Oral or dental surgery
Detailed Boniva (ibandronate) risks & warnings »
  • Taking steroids
  • Kidney problems
  • Not taking calcium supplements
  • Taking other medicines that can lower calcium blood levels
  • History of hypoparathyroidism (low levels of parathyroid hormone)
Detailed Prolia (denosumab) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Research studies with real people or animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. If you’re pregnant, the risks to your unborn baby outweigh the benefits.

Food
BonivaProlia
  • Although rare, breakdown of the jawbone has happened in people taking Boniva (ibandronate). This is more likely to happen if you have oral or dental surgery, or if you have poor oral hygiene. The risk might also increase the longer you take Boniva (ibandronate). If you notice pain or swelling in your jaw, talk to your doctor right away.
No food related info.
Pain
BonivaProlia
  • If you have pain with swallowing around your chest or stomach, new or worsening heartburn, or any pain around your hips, thighs, or jaw, tell your doctor right away.
  • Can cause skin irritation, joint pain, limb pain, and back pain.
Upsides and benefits
BonivaProlia
  • Available in generic.
  • Available in pills that can be taken by mouth once a month.
  • Also available as a shot given into your vein every 3 months.
  • Prolia (Denosumab) is effective at preventing bone loss, making your bones stronger and lowering your chance of getting a fracture.
  • Only need to get an injection every 6 months, so you don’t have to remember to take something every day.
Downsides and risks
BonivaProlia
  • You have to take Boniva (ibandronate) first thing in the morning with a full glass of water.
  • You have to remain upright for at least 60 minutes after you take the medicine, which can be a problem if you have mobility issues.
  • It is only approved to treat and prevent osteoporosis in women who have gone through menopause.
  • Approved for women only after they’ve reached menopause. Don’t use this if you’re pregnant or planning to become pregnant.
  • Can lower blood calcium levels. You might need to take calcium supplements to prevent this.
  • Not available as a generic.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
BonivaProlia
  • Can be taken as a pill or as an injection.
  • Take the pill first thing when you wake up by swallowing the whole pill with a full glass of plain water.
  • Don't eat or drink anything, or take other medicines for at least 60 minutes after you've taken the pill.
  • Stay sitting or standing for at least 60 minutes after you take the pill.
  • If you have pain with swallowing around your chest or stomach, new or worsening heartburn, or any pain around your hips, thighs, or jaw, tell your doctor right away.
  • Take the 150 mg tablet on the same day every month. If you forget to take the 150 mg tablet on your chosen day each month, take it on the next day in the morning.
  • Keep taking your calcium and vitamin D.
  • Remember to get your shot every 6 months. Write it down on your calendar.
  • If your doctor also told you to take calcium and vitamin D, remember to take them as well. They'll work with Prolia (Denosumab) to help protect your bones.
  • Can cause skin irritation, joint pain, limb pain, and back pain.
  • Let your doctor know if you start getting more infections.
  • Let your dentist know that you’re taking Prolia (Denosumab) since it can cause problems in the jaw bone after dental procedures.
Learn more
More about BonivaSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Boniva (ibandronate)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about ProliaSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Prolia (denosumab)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it