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Drugs reference index «DDAVP»



Generic name: Desmopressin acetateBrand names: Stimate, DDAVP

Why is DDAVP prescribed?

DDAVP nasal spray, nose drops, and tablets are given to prevent or control the frequent urination and loss of water associated with diabetes insipidus (a rare condition characterized by very large quantities of diluted urine and excessive thirst). They are also used to treat frequent passage of urine and increased thirst in people with certain brain injuries, and those who have undergone surgery in the pituitary region of the brain. DDAVP nasal spray and nose drops are also prescribed to help stop some types of bedwetting.

Stimate nasal spray is used to stop bleeding in certain types of hemophilia (failure of the blood to clot).

Most important fact about DDAVP

When taking DDAVP, elderly and young people in particular should limit their fluid intake to no more than what satisfies thirst. Although extremely rare, there is a possibility of water intoxication, in which reduced sodium levels in the blood can lead to seizures.

How should you take DDAVP?

Use DDAVP exactly as prescribed. The spray and drops are for nasal use only; never swallow the medication or allow the liquid to run into your mouth.

Your doctor may increase or decrease your dosage, depending on how you respond to DDAVP. Your response will be judged by how long you are able to sleep without having to get up to urinate and how much urine your kidneys produce.

The DDAVP nasal spray pump bottle accurately delivers 50 doses of the medication. After the 50th dose, the amount of medication that comes out with each spray will no longer be a full dose. When this happens, throw the bottle away even if it is not completely empty.

Stimate nasal spray delivers 25 doses; the same instructions apply. The Stimate nasal spray pump must be primed before you use it for the first time: Press down 4 times.

Since the DDAVP spray bottle delivers only a standard-sized dose, those who need more or less medication should use the nose drops instead of the spray.

If nasal congestion, scars, or swelling inside the nose make it difficult to absorb DDAVP, your doctor may temporarily stop the drug or give you tablets or an injectable form. If you are switched to tablets, you should start taking them 12 hours after you last used the nasal spray or nose drops.

  • If you miss a dose...Take the forgotten dose as soon as you remember. If you take 1 dose a day and don't remember until the next day, skip the dose. If you take DDAVP more than once a day and it is almost time for the next dose, skip the one you missed and go back to your regular schedule. Never try to "catch up" by doubling the dose.
  • Storage instructions...The drops should be stored in the refrigerator. If you are traveling, they will stay fresh at room temperature for up to 3 weeks.

The tablets and nasal spray can be kept at room temperature. Protect the tablets from heat and light.

What side effects may occur?

Too high a dosage of DDAVP nasal spray or drops may produce headache, nausea, mild abdominal cramps, stuffy nose, irritation of the nose, or flushing. These symptoms will probably disappear when the dosage is reduced. Some people have complained of nosebleed, sore throat, cough, or a cold or other upper respiratory infections after taking DDAVP nasal spray or drops.

  • Other potential side effects include:Abdominal pain, chills, conjunctivitis (pinkeye), depression, dizziness, inability to produce tears, leg rash, nostril pain, rash, stomach or intestinal upset, swelling around the eyes, weakness
  • Side effects of Stimate nasal spray may include:Agitation, chest pain, chills, dizziness, fluid retention and swelling, indigestion, inflammation of the penis, insomnia, itchy or light-sensitive eyes, pain, pounding heartbeat, rapid heartbeat, sleepiness, vomiting, warm feeling

Why should DDAVP not be prescribed?

Do not use DDAVP if you are sensitive to or have ever had an allergic reaction to any of its ingredients.

Special warnings about DDAVP

If you have cystic fibrosis or any other condition in which there is fluid and electrolyte imbalance, you should use DDAVP with extreme caution.

Because DDAVP may cause a rise in blood pressure, use DDAVP cautiously if you have high blood pressure and/or coronary artery disease. Your blood pressure could also fall temporarily. If you continue to experience bleeding after using Stimate nasal spray, contact your doctor.

Possible food and drug interactions when taking DDAVP

If DDAVP is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining DDAVP with the following:

Any drug used to increase blood pressureClofibrateGlyburideEpinephrine

Special information if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, inform your doctor immediately. Although DDAVP is not known to cause birth defects, it should be used with caution. DDAVP should be taken during pregnancy only if clearly needed. DDAVP is not believed to appear in breast milk. However, check with your doctor before using the drug while breastfeeding.

Recommended dosage for DDAVP

Your doctor will carefully tailor your dosage to meet your individual needs.


DDAVP Nasal Spray and Nose Drops

Adults: The usual recommended dosage range is 0.1 to 0.4 milliliter daily, either as a single dose or divided into 2 or 3 doses. Most adults require 0.2 milliliter per day divided into 2 doses.

Children: The usual dosage range for children aged 3 months to 12 years is 0.05 to 0.3 milliliter daily, either as a single dose or divided into 2 doses.

DDAVP Tablets

Adults and Children Aged 4 and Over: The usual starting dose is half of a 0.1-milligram tablet twice a day. Your doctor will adjust the dose to suit you. You will eventually take 0.1 to 1.2 milligrams a day, divided into smaller doses.


DDAVP Nasal Spray/Nose Drops

Children 6 Years of Age and Older: The usual recommended dose is 20 micrograms or 0.2 milliliter at bedtime. Dosage requirements range from 10 to 40 micrograms. One-half the dose should be taken in each nostril.


Stimate Nasal Spray

To stop bleeding, the usual dose is one 150-microgram spray in each nostril. If you use the spray more frequently than every 48 hours, you may find you are not responding as well as you should to the drug.


An overdose of DDAVP may cause abdominal cramps, flushing, headache, or nausea. If you suspect an overdose of DDAVP, seek medical attention immediately.

  • DDAVP MedFacts Consumer Leaflet (Wolters Kluwer)
  • DDAVP Prescribing Information (FDA)
  • DDAVP Advanced Consumer (Micromedex) - Includes Dosage Information
  • DDAVP Concise Consumer Information (Cerner Multum)
  • Desmopressin Prescribing Information (FDA)
  • DDAVP Rhinal Tube nasal Concise Consumer Information (Cerner Multum)
  • Minirin Spray (Refrigerated) MedFacts Consumer Leaflet (Wolters Kluwer)
  • Stimate Prescribing Information (FDA)
  • Stimate Spray MedFacts Consumer Leaflet (Wolters Kluwer)

See Also...

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