Thursday, January 10, 2013

Ganciclovir Unwanted Effects

Ganciclovir is a prescription antiviral medicine that is used for individuals with medical conditions related to the immune system (such as acquired immunodeficiency syndrome also known as AIDS). It is also used to treat a severe eye infection that is known as cytomegalovirus retinitis (often abbreviated as CMV), reducing the chances of blindness caused by this infection. Ganciclovir is administered through injection, implant, and capsule form, and there are several possible side effects of Ganciclovir.

Common Side Effects

Some Ganciclovir side effects (oral and injection form) are not generally cause for alarm, due to the fact that they usually subside quickly. If you experience any of these effects and find them to be particularly persistent or uncomfortable, you should speak with your doctor: appetite loss, sweating, vomiting and diarrhea.

Serious Side Effects

Serious side effects of the oral and injected versions of Ganciclovir call for immediate emergency medical attention and include: dark, tarry or bloody stools, changes in amounts of urine, tingling or numbing of the feet or the hands, changes in vision (like flashes of light and blurry vision), swelling, redness or pain where the medication was injected (only for the injected version of the medicine), abnormal weakness or exhaustion, stomachache, vomit that resembles coffee grounds and abnormal bleeding or bruising.

Allergic Reactions

An allergic reaction is a serious side effect of Ganciclovir (both injected and oral versions). Call for immediate medical attention if you have trouble breathing, develop a skin rash, hives, experience tightness in your chest tightness or have swelling and itchiness.

Other Serious Side Effects

The oral and injected Ganciclovir medication has been known to result in low levels of platelets, low white blood cell counts and anemia. People that already have low platelet and white blood cell counts or anemia are advised against taking this medication.

Implant Side Effects

Apart from oral and injected versions of Ganciclovir, it is also administered as an intravitreal implant. The aforementioned side effects apply to the oral and injected forms of the medication. When Ganciclovir is used as an intravitreal implant, other side effects could occur, such as the common and usually minor side effect of higher eye pressure. Other side effects of the implant version of Ganciclovir include seeing floating spots or flashes, sensitivity to light, redness, or pain in the eye that was untreated, vision decreases, eye bleeding, and changes in vision.


It is very important to be cautious before taking Ganciclovir. You must discuss your full medical history with your doctor, and make sure that she is aware of any present conditions or allergies (to medicines, foods or other substances) that you might have. This holds particularly true for conditions including mental disorders, eye issues (apart from CMV), seizures, and liver or kidney disease. If you are allergic to valancyclovir or acyclovir, your doctor must be informed. With certain allergies and medical conditions, Ganciclovir might not be suitable for you. In other cases, you might simply require dosage changes or specialized testing beforehand (to be able to safely use this medication).


If you suspect that you might have overdosed on Ganciclovir, it is crucial that you get medical help immediately. Some common symptoms of Ganciclovir overdose include extreme diarrhea, urinating less frequently and vomiting.

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