Calcitriol is a medication that is used to manage low blood calcium levels. It is made of manmade active form of the vitamin D. Generally, people get vitamin D by the exposure to the sun as well as fortified foods such as dairy products or vitamin supplements. Vitamin D is vital for building and keep the bones of the body strong.
Vitamin D is processed in the kidney and the liver to its natural form so that the body can use it. However, patients with kidney diseases cannot process the vitamin D and require extra dose. Such patients are prescribed Calcitriol to treat abnormal parathyroid hormone levels, low blood calcium as well as for people on dialysis.
Other uses of calcitriol include treatment or prevention of:
Calcitriol is available in form of a capsule and liquid form (solution). It needs to be taken orally and is usually taken once day or every alternate days. Calcitriol needs to be taken in the morning with or without food.
Never take more or less than prescribed of calcitriol. The doctor may start a low of calcitriol initially and may gradually increase the dose. Calcitriol will control the condition, but is not the cure for it. Never stop taking calcitriol without speaking to your doctor, even if you feel well after taking it.
The doctor will adjust the dosage as per the patient’s requirement. The usual dose for osteoporosis is 250 nanogram capsule twice a day. If you miss a dose of calcitriol, take it as soon as you remember it. Never take a double dose of calcitriol to make up for a missed dose.
The effects of calcitriol on an unborn baby are not known. Thus, discuss with your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to get pregnant before taking calcitriol. Similarly, speak to your doctor if you are breast-feeding, as it is not known if calcitriol can pass through breastmilk.
Alcohol may increase certain side effects of calcitriol. Thus, speak to your doctor how much alcohol is permitted for you to drink when using calcitriol. One may experience drowsiness when using calcitriol. Thus, be carefully when driving or operating machinery where one needs to stay alert. One should be extremely cautious when prescribing calcitriol to babies who are 1 year or younger in age as well as children on dialysis.
Subscribe to our email newsletter.