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    Tolvaptan

    Information about Tolvaptan

    Tolvaptan uses

    Tolvaptan is used in the treatment of low levels of sodium in the blood. It treats low levels of sodium in the blood, which can result from conditions such as heart failure, cirrhosis and syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone (SIADH).

    How tolvaptan works

    Tolvaptan is a vasopressin antagonist. It works by blocking the effect of the hormone vasopressin in the body. This increases urine production, reduces the amount of water in the blood and raises the blood sodium level.

    Common side effects of tolvaptan

    Frequent urge to urinate, Nocturia (increased urge to urinate during the night), Weakness, Dryness in mouth, Increased thirst, Constipation
    Content Details
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    Written By
    Dr. Balshine Singh Kanwar
    MD, MBBS
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    Reviewed By
    Dr. Lalit Kanodia
    MD (Pharmacology), MBBS
    Last updated on:
    16 Oct 2019 | 01:31 PM (IST)
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    Expert advice for Tolvaptan

    • Tolvaptan treats low sodium levels in the blood.
    • It also improves urine flow without causing the body to lose too much sodium as you urinate.
    • Take it at the same time everyday. Take it according to the dose and duration prescribed by your doctor.
    • To avoid dehydration, it is best to drink something as soon as you feel thirsty, but avoid alcoholic drinks.
    • Do not take Tolvaptan if you are unable to urinate, if you are unable to tell when you are thirsty, or if you are severely dehydrated.
    • You will need to be in a hospital under observation any time you start or restart treatment with Tolvaptan.
    • Inform your doctor if you notice problems with speech or muscle control, trouble swallowing, trouble moving your arms and legs, or mood changes.
    • Your doctor may check your liver function before starting treatment and regularly thereafter. Inform your doctor if you notice yellowing of eyes or skin, dark urine, or stomach pain.

    Frequently asked questions for Tolvaptan

    Tolvaptan

    Q. What is the most important information I need to be aware of while taking Tolvaptan?

    Tolvaptan may cause the level of sodium in your blood to increase too quickly. This quick increase in sodium levels [osmotic demyelination syndrome (ODS)] may cause serious nerve damage, which can further cause coma and even death. The symptoms of ODS could be trouble in speaking, trouble in swallowing or a feeling of food or liquid getting stuck while swallowing, drowsiness, confusion, mood changes, fits, trouble controlling body movement (involuntary movement) and weakness in muscles of the arms and legs.

    Q. For how long do I need to take Tolvaptan?

    Tolvaptan is used for correction of sodium levels in blood. Though the dose and duration are prescribed by the doctor, Tolvaptan should not be taken for more than 30 days. Once the sodium levels return to normal, it can be stopped after talking to the doctor.

    Q. Does Tolvaptan affect the sugar levels in blood?

    Yes, Tolvaptan may increase the blood sugar levels. Therefore, patients with diabetes mellitus need to be extra careful while taking Tolvaptan and should keep a check on blood sugar levels regularly.

    Q. Who should not take Tolvaptan?

    You should not take Tolvaptan if you have low sodium levels, cannot replace fluids by drinking or if you cannot tell when you are thirsty, dizzy or feeling faint or if your kidneys are not working properly because of excessive loss of fluids. You should also avoid Tolvaptan if your body is not able to make urine, you are allergic to Tolvaptan or if you are on certain medicines which interfere with the working of Tolvaptan.

    Q. Can I have grapefruit juice while taking Tolvaptan?

    No, you should not take grapefruit or grapefruit juice while on Tolvaptan. The reason being, grapefruit or grapefruit juice may increase the levels of Tolvaptan in your blood and your sodium levels may rise too quickly.

    Q. What will happen if I take excess of Tolvaptan?

    You may need urgent medical attention. Call your doctor or seek emergency service at a nearby hospital. Symptoms of taking too much Tolvaptan may include thirst, dry and flaky skin, sunken eyes, rapid heartbeat, rapid and shallow breathing, very low blood pressure, passing more urine than normal and fainting.

    Content on this page was last updated on 16 October, 2019, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)