How should this medicine be used?
Doxercalciferol comes as a capsule to take by mouth. For people receiving dialysis treatments, it is usually taken three times weekly at dialysis sessions. For people with chronic kidney disease who are not receiving dialysis treatments, it is usually taken once daily. Take doxercalciferol at around the same time on the appropriate days. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take doxercalciferol exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Your doctor may change your dose depending on your body's response to doxercalciferol.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking doxercalciferol,
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to doxercalciferol, any other medications, or any of the ingredients in doxercalciferol capsules. Ask your pharmacist for a list of the ingredients.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what other prescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention any of the following: calcium supplements, cholestyramine (Prevalite), erythromycin (E.E.S., Ery-Tab, PCE, others), ketoconazole, mineral oil (in laxatives), phenobarbital, or other forms of vitamin D. Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects. You and your caregiver should know that many nonprescription medications are not safe to take with doxercalciferol. Ask your doctor before you take any nonprescription medications while you are taking doxercalciferol.
- tell your doctor if you are taking antacids containing magnesium (Maalox, Mylanta) and are being treated for dialysis. Your doctor will probably tell you not to take these antacids during your treatment with doxercalciferol.
- tell your doctor if you have high blood levels of calcium or vitamin D in your body. Your doctor will probably tell you not to take doxercalciferol.
- tell your doctor if you have high blood levels of phosphorus or if you have or have ever had liver disease.
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking doxercalciferol, call your doctor.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Doxercalciferol may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- sleep problems
- joint pain
- weight gain
Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
- feeling tired, difficulty thinking clearly, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, constipation, increased thirst, increased urination, or weight loss
- swelling of the arms, hands, feet, and legs
- shortness of breath
Doxercalciferol may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online (http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).
In case of emergency/overdose
In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.
Symptoms of overdose may include:
- feeling tired
- difficulty thinking clearly
- loss of appetite
- increased thirst
- increased urination
- weight loss
What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will order certain lab tests before and during your treatment with doxercalciferol.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.