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Valganciclovir (By mouth)

Valganciclovir (val-gan-SYE-kloe-vir)

Treats and prevents cytomegalovirus (CMV) eye infection.

Brand Name(s):

Valcyte, valGANciclovir AvPak

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

This medicine is not right for everyone. Do not use it if you had an allergic reaction to valganciclovir or ganciclovir.

How to Use This Medicine:

Powder for Solution, Liquid, Tablet

  • Your doctor will tell you how much medicine to use. Do not use more than directed.
  • It is best to take this medicine with food or milk.
  • Drink extra fluids so you will urinate more often and help prevent kidney problems.
  • Measure the oral liquid medicine with a marked measuring spoon, oral syringe, or medicine cup.
  • Swallow the tablet whole. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
  • Be careful not to handle crushed or broken tablets. If the oral solution or a broken tablet comes in contact with your skin, wash the area with soap and water. If the medicine gets into your eyes, rinse them with water.
  • Contact your doctor or pharmacist ahead of time before your supply of this medicine is low. Do not allow yourself to run out of medicine.
  • Take all of the medicine in your prescription to clear up your infection, even if you feel better after the first few doses.
  • Read and follow the patient instructions that come with this medicine. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
  • Missed dose: Take a dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and take a regular dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Store the oral liquid in the refrigerator. Do not freeze.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Some medicines can affect how valganciclovir works. Tell your doctor if you are using didanosine, ganciclovir, mycophenolate mofetil, probenecid, zidovudine, or if you are receiving radiation treatment.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • This medicine may cause birth defects if either partner is using it during conception or pregnancy. Tell your doctor right away if you or your partner becomes pregnant. Women must use an effective form of birth control to prevent pregnancy while they take this medicine and for at least 1 month after treatment ends. Men should use condoms during treatment and for at least 90 days after treatment ends.
  • This medicine could cause infertility. Talk with your doctor before using this medicine if you plan to have children.
  • Do not breastfeeding while you are using this medicine unless your doctor says it is okay.
  • Tell your doctor if you have kidney disease or blood or bone marrow problems.
  • This medicine may cause kidney failure.
  • This medicine may make you bleed, bruise, or get infections more easily. Take precautions to prevent illness and injury. Wash your hands often.
  • This medicine may make you confused, dizzy, or drowsy. Do not drive or do anything that could be dangerous until you know how this medicine affects you.
  • Your doctor will do lab tests at regular visits to check on the effects of this medicine. Keep all appointments. You will also need eye exams every 4 to 6 weeks.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Decrease in how much or how often you urinate, burning or pain during urination
  • Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, body aches
  • Seeing floating objects or flashes of light, a shadow over your field of vision, eye pain, blurred vision
  • Shaky or unsteady movements, dizziness, confusion
  • Unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, or stomach pain
  • Headache
  • Numbness, tingling, or burning pain in your hands, arms, legs, or feet
  • Trouble sleeping

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Last Updated: 5/1/2020

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites.

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