Forteo vs. Evista

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

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Prevents bone loss. Forteo (Teriparatide) is a good second-choice medication to treat bone loss, but it's only available as an injectable.Prevents bone loss and lowers your risk of breast cancer. Evista (Raloxifene) is effective at reducing bone loss and lowering the risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women, but does carry the risk of blood clots.
How it works
Forteo (Teriparatide) works by stimulating cells that build up and strengthen your bones.Evista (Raloxifene) is a selective estrogen receptor modulator (SERM). It acts like estrogen to make your bones stronger and less likely to break, and also protects breast and uterus tissues from other estrogen effects.
Type of medication
Parathyroid hormone
Prescription only
Selective estrogen receptor modulator
Prescription only
Available as
  • Injection
  • Pill
Used for (click to learn more)
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Reviews & ratings
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Side effects
  • Dizziness 3%
  • Joint pain 2%
  • Fainting 2%
  • Leg cramps 2%
  • Muscle weakness 2%
  • Inflammation inside the nose 1%
  • Indigestion 1%
  • Vertigo 1%
  • Low mood disorder 1%
  • Tooth disorder 1%
More Forteo side effects »
  • Muscle spasms/leg cramps 4%
  • Leg cramps 3%
  • Sinus inflammation 3%
  • Leg or ankle swelling 2%
  • Muscle pain 2%
  • Sleep difficulty 2%
  • Rash 2%
  • Joint pain 2%
  • Weight gain 2%
  • Any side effect 1%
More Evista side effects »
Risk factors for serious side effects
  • Paget's bone disease
  • Young people with open epiphyses
  • Hypercalcemia
  • Hyperparathyroidism
  • History of kidney stones
    • Digoxin use
    Detailed Forteo (Teriparatide) risks & warnings »
    • History of stroke
    • Heart and blood vessel problems
    • History of mini stroke (TIA)
    • Atrial fibrillation
    • Smoking
    • High blood pressure
      • History of high triglycerides
        Detailed Evista (Raloxifene) risks & warnings »
        Pregnancy category
        CFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

        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.

        See the FDA package insert
        XFDA pregnancy category (Unsafe)

        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.

        See the FDA package insert
        No specific alcohol-related info.
        • Regular exercise, cutting back on smoking, and drinking less alcohol can also reduce your risk of bone loss.
        No specific food-related info.
        • Take 1 tablet daily with or without food about the same time each day. It’s important to read the information you get with your medicine about how to take Evista (Raloxifene).
        Kidneys and liver
        • Forteo (Teriparatide) can cause kidney stones, especially if you have high calcium levels in your urine. If kidney stones are suspected, your doctor can measure the amount of calcium in your urine to see if you are at risk. Be careful using this medication if you have a history of kidney stones.
        • Evista (Raloxifene) is processed by the kidney and liver. If you have kidney or liver problems, talk to your doctor because you may need a different dose.
        No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
        No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
        No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
        Upsides and benefits
        • If you're unable to use bisphosphonates or are still having fractures despite being on other medications, Forteo (Teriparatide) can be a good alternative.
        • You can start using Forteo (Teriparatide) as soon as you stop using bisphosphonates.
        • Evista (Raloxifene) doesn’t affect the breast or uterus the same way that estrogen does, so the risk of cancer is much lower.
        • Taking Evista (Raloxifene) with calcium and vitamin D improves spine and hip bone health and lowers the risk of fractures.
        • Lowers total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol (the bad cholesterol).
        Downsides and risks
        • Only available as a brand medication, so it can be expensive.
        • You have to inject this every day, so it may not be a good option if you don't like needles.
        • Shouldn't take this longer than 18 to 24 months since it can increase the risk of bone cancers.
        • Can only take Evista (Raloxifene) once you’re in menopause. You can't take it if you're pregnant or breastfeeding.
        • Evista (Raloxifene) isn’t as effective as tamoxifen at lowering the risk of invasive breast cancer.
        • Shouldn’t take it with any other forms of estrogen (pills, patches, or injection).
        • It doesn’t increase bone strength as much as estrogen does and isn’t effective for treating hot flashes.
        Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
        • You should be sitting or lying down when you inject Forteo (Teriparatide) since it can make you dizzy.
        • You should inject Forteo (Teriparatide) under the skin in either your thigh or stomach.
        • Make sure the liquid in the vial of Forteo (Teriparatide) is clear and colorless before you inject it. Don't use it if it looks cloudy, colored, or if you see particles inside.
        • Take 1 tablet daily with or without food about the same time each day. It’s important to read the information you get with your medicine about how to take Evista (Raloxifene).
        • Your doctor may tell you to take calcium and vitamin D with Evista (Raloxifene) to prevent osteoporosis (bone thinning and loss), especially if you don’t get enough in your diet.
        • Regular exercise, cutting back on smoking, and drinking less alcohol can also reduce your risk of bone loss.
        Learn more
        More about ForteoSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
        More about EvistaSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert