calcitriol (Rocaltrol)

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

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SIDE EFFECTS WARNING:

Excessive vitamin D may lead to hypercalcemia (abnormally high levels of calcium in the blood), hypercalciuria (elevated levels of calcium in the urine), hyperphosphatemia (high levels of phosphate in the blood), and bone disease. To avoid complications, vitamin D and its derivatives should be avoided during calcitriol therapy.

Hypercalcemia has been reported in patients treated with calcitriol. Patients should avoid making any sudden changes in their dietary calcium intake and maintain adequate intake of fluid (hydration) during treatment.

PRESCRIPTION: Yes

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

PREPARATIONS:

  • Oral liquid filled capsules: 0.25 and 0.5 mcg
  • Oral solution: 1 mcg/ml
  • Solution for injection: 1 and 2 mcg/ml

STORAGE: Calcitriol should be stored at room temperature, between 15 C and 30 C (59 F and 86 F). Protect from light.

DOSING:

  • The recommended initial oral dose for treating low calcium due to kidney dialysis is 0.25 mcg daily.
  • The dose may be increased by 0.25 mcg daily every 4 to 8 weeks.
  • Most patients respond to 0.5 to 1 mcg daily.
  • The oral dose for treating hypoparathyroidism is 0.25 mcg to 2 mcg daily.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 10/7/2015

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