Vistide

Generic Name: Cidofovir

  • What is Vistide?

    Vistide is a medicine used to treat cytomegalovirus (CMV) retinitis (eye disease that involves damage to the layer of tissue in the back of the eye called the retina) in patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Vistide is administered intravenously (through a vein in your arm).

  • What is the most important information I should know about Vistide?

    Vistide can cause severe kidney problems; your doctor will monitor your kidney function while you are receiving Vistide.

    Along with Vistide administration, a medicine called probenecid must be given to you to reduce the risk of causing kidney problems. Probenecid can cause allergic reactions (such as rash, fever, or chills), headache, nausea, or vomiting. You doctor will monitor you and may give you medicines to treat these symptoms.

    Vistide is not a cure for CMV retinitis. You can still get CMV during or after treatment.

    Vistide can decrease your visual acuity. You must continue to have regular eye examinations while you are treated with Vistide.

    Vistide can cause birth defects; your doctor will not use it during pregnancy. Tell your doctor immediately if you become pregnant while you are using this medicine. If you are a woman of childbearing age, you should use an effective birth control while you are receiving Vistide and for 1 month after the treatment. Men should use a condom during Vistide treatment and for 90 days after discontinuing treatment. Vistide can cause cancer and metabolic acidosis (a condition in which there is too much acid in the body).

    Vistide can lower the amount of your white blood cells. Your doctor may order regular blood tests to check your blood cell counts while you are on Vistide.

  • Who should not take Vistide?

    Your doctor will not administer Vistide to you if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients, if you have kidney disease, or had a severe allergic reaction to probenecid or other sulfa-containing medications.

  • What should I tell my doctor before I take the first dose of Vistide?

    Tell your doctor about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Vistide. Also, talk to your doctor about your complete medical history, especially if you have kidney problems, or are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What is the usual dosage?

    The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your doctor uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your doctor may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your doctor's approval.

    Adults: Your doctor will administer the appropriate dose for you intravenously, based on your weight and kidney function.

    If you have kidney impairment, your doctor will adjust your dose appropriately.

  • How should I take Vistide?

    Your doctor will administer Vistide to you.

  • What should I avoid while taking Vistide?

    Do not miss your follow-up appointments with your doctor.

    Do not get pregnant while you are receiving Vistide.

  • What are possible food and drug interactions associated with Vistide?

    If Vistide is used with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is important to tell your doctor if you are taking any other medication.

  • What are the possible side effects of Vistide?

    Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this drug.

    Side effects may include: anemia, chills, diarrhea, fever, hair loss, headache, increased cough, infection, loss of appetite, mouth fungal infection, nausea, pain, protein in your urine, rash, shortness of breath, vomiting, weakness

  • Can I receive Vistide if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    Your doctor will not administer Vistide to you if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Tell your doctor immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What should I do if I miss a dose of Vistide?

    Vistide should be given under special circumstances determined by your doctor.

  • How should I store Vistide?

    Your doctor will store this medication for you.