Valganciclovir hydrochloride (Valcyte®) is an antiviral medication used to treat cytomegalovirus infections. As the L-valyl ester of ganciclovir, it is actually a prodrug for ganciclovir. After oral administration, it is rapidly converted to ganciclovir by intestinal and hepatic esterases. more...
Orally, available in 450 mg pink tablets. Dosing is calculated to provide appropriate doses of ganciclovir; 900 mg of valganciclovir orally every 12 hours is equivalent to 5 mg per kilogram of body weight of intravenous ganciclovir, also every 12 hours.
- Oral bioavailability is approximately 60%. Fatty foods significantly increase the bioavailability and the peak level in the serum.
- It takes about 2 hours to reach maximum concentrations in the serum.
- Valganciclovir is eliminated as ganciclovir in the urine, with a half-life of about 4 hours in people with normal kidney function.
- Blood: neutropenia, anemia, low platelets. Myelosuppression is one of the main side effects that may limit prolonged use of valganciclovir.
- Gastrointestinal: diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain.
- Central nervous system: fever, headache, insomnia, paresthesia, and peripheral neuropathy.
- Ocular: retinal detachment
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