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Valganciclovir

Drug Class: Commonly Known As: Category:
Antiviral Valcyte® Adult

Valganciclovir - What is it for

Valganciclovir is an antiviral used in the treatment and prevention of cytomegalovirus infections in high-risk individuals, such as those with poor immune function.

Valganciclovir - Side Effects, Precautions, and Contraindications

What side effects can Valganciclovir cause?

Possible side effects from valganciclovir and their management are listed below. Please speak to your doctor if you experience any other unusual side effects.​​​

SIDE EFFECTS​MANAGMENT
​Nausea and vomiting may occur. Your child may also experience loss of appetite but this usually resolves within a few days.
  • ​Your child may be given anti-vomiting medication to take at home—please take as prescribed, as it is easier to prevent nausea than treating.
  • Eat small but frequent meals.
  • Avoid drinking too much during meals.
  • Refrain from lying down for at least two hours after each meal.
  • Seek medical help immediately if your child experiences persistent vomiting.
Low white blood cell count. White blood cells protect the body by fighting bacteria (germs) that cause infection. When the number of white blood cells is low, your child will be more susceptible to infections.

​To help prevent infection:

  • Wash hands regularly, especially before eating and after using the bathroom.
  • Avoid crowded places and avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • Do not eat raw or undercooked food.

​Seek medical help immediately if your child experiences any of the following:

  • Fever (temperature of 38˚C twice or ≥38.5˚C once)
  • Bleeding in stools or urine
  • Any uncontrollable or persistent bleeding or bruising. ​
Low platelet counts.

Platelets are important for blood clotting. With low platelets, your child may bruise or bleed (e.g. gums or nose) more easily than usual.

​Be safety conscious.

Brush teeth gently with a soft-bristled toothbrush.

Diarrhea​Avoid oily or spicy foods, dairy products and caffeine.
Drink plenty of fluids.
​Infertility​ ​Please speak to your doctor if you have any concerns.
​Effects on the nervous system

​Please speak to your doctor if you experience any of the followings:

  • Difficulty in sleeping
  • Strange tastes
  • Numbness or prickly/tingling sensation in hands or feet
Allergic reactions may occur.

This may present as

  • Raised, itchy skin rash
  • Sudden swelling of the throat, face, lips and mouth which may cause difficulty swallowing or breathing
  • Sudden swelling of the hands, feet or ankles.
STOP taking medication and seek medical attention immediately ​

Before taking Valganciclovir, what precautions must I follow?

Do not give this medication if your child is allergic to Valganciclovir or any component of the formulation.

Before starting valganciclovir, inform your doctor if your child is on any other medication.  Always check with your doctor or pharmacist if you want to give any other medicines, supplements or herbal products to your child

What food or medicine must I avoid when I take Valganciclovir?

Valganciclovir - Dosage and How to Use

How should Valganciclovir be used?

  • Valganciclovir is usually given 1 to 2 times daily. It is advisable to take the tablets at the same time each day.
  • Valganciclovir should be taken with food to improve absorption. If your child is taking the oral suspension, shake well before use.
  • Take valganciclovir with plenty of water every day unless told to drink less liquid by your child’s doctor.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

  • If you forget a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is nearer to the time of your next dose, skip the missed dose. Do not take two doses at the same time.
  • Do not repeat dose if vomiting occurs after dose has been administered, wait until the next scheduled dose. Contact the pharmacist or doctor if your child repeatedly misses doses due to vomiting, even with the administration of anti-vomiting medicine

What should I do if I overdose?

Valganciclovir - Handling and Storage

How should I handle Valganciclovir safely?

​Please refer to “Safe Handling of Oral Cytotoxic Medications for additional instructions of use, handling and disposal.

How should I store Valganciclovir?

Keep away from children;#Keep in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight;#Others;#

Store the capsules at room temperature (25ºC).

The oral suspension should be refrigerated (2-8ºC).

How should I dispose of Valganciclovir safely?

Valganciclovir - Additional Information

  • Pregnant women should avoid contact with this medicine as it may harm the fetus.
  • Do not drive or use any tools/machines if you feel dizzy, tired, shaky or confused while taking this medicine.
  • Updated on Saturday, October 7, 2017
  • Article contributed by Pharmacy Department KK Women's and Children's Hospital

The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth

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