Vistogard

Vistogard treats overdose of certain types of chemotherapy. This medication is the first-of-its-kind emergency treatment.

Vistogard Overview

Reviewed: December 11, 2015
Updated: 

Vistogard is a prescription medication used to treat overdose or toxicities of certain types of chemotherapy. Vistogard belongs to a group of drugs called pyrimidine analogs. These work by blocking cell damage and cell death.

This medication comes in granule form (by mouth) and is typically taken as one packet of granules every six hours for a total of 20 doses, with soft food and water.

Do not chew the Vistogard granules.

Common side effects of Vistogard include vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea.

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Uses of Vistogard

Vistogard is a prescription medication used in adults and children for the emergency treatment of the following:

  • after an overdose of the cancer treatment fluorouracil or capecitabine
  • who have early signs of severe or life-threatening side effects that affect the heart, or early signs of severe or life threatening neurologic (central nervous system) problems, or certain unusually severe side effects within four days of receiving fluorouracil or capecitabine

This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Vistogard Drug Class

Vistogard is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Vistogard

Serious side effects have been reported with Vistogard. See the "Drug Precautions" section.

Common side effects of Vistogard include the following:

  • vomiting
  • nausea
  • diarrhea

This is not a complete list of Vistogard side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

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

Vistogard Interactions

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your doctor if you take:

  • medications that use the p-glycoprotein transporter such as digoxin (Lanoxin), loperamide (Imodium), quinidine, vinblastine (Velban), fexofenadine (Allegra), indinavir (Crixivan), colchicine (Colcrys), topotecan (Hycamtin), and paclitaxel (Abraxane, Onxol, Taxol)

This is not a complete list of Vistogard drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

 

Vistogard Precautions

Do not take Vistogard if you are allergic to Vistogard or to any of its ingredients.

Vistogard Food Interactions

Medications can interact with certain foods. In some cases, this may be harmful and your doctor may advise you to avoid certain foods. In the case of Vistogard, there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet when receiving this medication.

Inform MD

Before taking Vistogard, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions. Especially tell your doctor if you:

  • are allergic to Vistogard or any of its ingredients
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant
  • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Vistogard and Pregnancy

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

There have been no studies done in humans with Vistogard. In animal studies, pregnant animals were given Vistogard and the babies did not show any medical problems related to this medication. It is not known if Vistogard will harm your unborn baby. Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits associated with taking Vistogard while pregnant.

Vistogard and Lactation

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. 

It is not known if Vistogard crosses into human milk. Because many medications can cross into human milk and because of the possibility for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants with use of this medication, a choice should be made whether to stop nursing or stop the use of this medication. Your doctor and you will decide if the benefits outweigh the risk of using Vistogard. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best way to feed your baby if you take Vistogard. 

Vistogard Usage

Take Vistogard exactly as prescribed.

Vistogard comes as packets of granules to be taken by mouth every 6 hours for 20 doses, with or without food.

It is important that you take all 20 doses of Vistogard even if you feel well.

If you are giving Vistogard to your child at home, it is important that you follow your doctor's instructions. The dose will be based on your child's weight. Measure the dose of Vistogard using a scale that is accurate to at least 0.1 grams, or a graduated teaspoon that measures accurately to 1/4 teaspoon.

Preparation of Vistogard

  • Mix each Vistogard dose with 3 to 4 ounces of a soft food (such as applesauce, yogurt, or pudding) in a small container
  • Take the dose within 30 minutes after mixing
  • Do not chew the Vistogard granules
  • After you take the full dose, drink at least 4 ounces of water to make sure that all of the medicine is swallowed
  • Discard any unused granules in the packet. Do not use any leftover granules for further doses.

If you miss a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Take the next dose at the regularly scheduled time. Do not take two doses of Vistogard at the same time.

If you vomit within 2 hours of taking a dose of Vistogard, take another full dose as soon as possible and then take your next dose at the regularly scheduled time.

Vistogard Dosage

Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully.

The dose your doctor recommends may be based on the following:

  • your age
  • your height
  • your weight

The recommended dose in adults is one packet (equal to 10 grams Vistogard) every 6 hours for 20 doses.

The recommended dose in a child is 6.2 grams/m2 of body surface area (not to exceed 10 grams per dose) every 6 hours for 20 doses. 

 

Vistogard Overdose

If you take too much Vistogard, call your healthcare provider or local Poison Control Center, or seek emergency medical attention right away.

If Vistogard is administered by a healthcare provider in a medical setting, it is unlikely that an overdose will occur. However, if overdose is suspected, seek emergency medical attention.

Other Requirements

  • Store Vistogard at room temperature.
  • Keep this and all medications out of the reach of children.