What Are the Most Common Desmopressin Side Effects?

Autumn Rivers
Autumn Rivers
Nausea is a common side effect of desmopressin.
Nausea is a common side effect of desmopressin.

Desmopressin is a medicine often prescribed for patients suffering from central cranial diabetes insipidus, and those who wet the bed or urinate more often than usual after suffering head trauma. Few patients experience side effects from taking desmopressin, but those who do are urged to tell their doctor, even when they notice fairly mild symptoms. For example, some of the least serious side effects tend to include headaches, nausea and facial redness. Those who vomit, feel weak or notice symptoms of high blood pressure are experiencing more serious desmopressin side effects and are advised to call a doctor right away. Also serious are the signs of an allergic reaction to this drug, which may include facial swelling, hives and trouble breathing.

Some individuals may experience hives as part of an allergic reaction to desmopressin.
Some individuals may experience hives as part of an allergic reaction to desmopressin.

Some patients are only slightly bothered by minor desmopressin side effects, and may not even attribute them to the drug. One common example is increased headaches, which can be caused by various issues and, thus, is not always reported to a doctor. Patients who also notice other symptoms are encouraged to tell their doctor at their next visit, because they may need to be switched to a different medication. For instance, those who notice that their face looks red and feels warm and tingly should mention it to their doctor. Stomach problems, such as nausea and diarrhea, also are some common desmopressin side effects that may warrant a switch to a different drug.

Most side effects associated with desmopression are mild and include headaches and nausea.
Most side effects associated with desmopression are mild and include headaches and nausea.

There are more serious desmopressin side effects that may call for emergency treatment. For example, some patients may feel weak, confused or irritable, and some even hallucinate while taking this drug. In addition, for some patients, mild nausea may turn into vomiting and loss of appetite, or they may gain weight or begin to swell. Symptoms of high blood pressure — including anxiety, buzzing ears and blurry vision — also may be apparent. These signs often turn into more serious symptoms, such as difficulty breathing, chest pain and seizures, which require immediate medical attention.

Those who are allergic to this drug may not notice the typical desmopressin side effects, but they may experience other issues. One common example is the sudden appearance of hives, which are small red spots that may appear all over the body or just in some areas. Many people who are allergic to this drug also may experience swelling of the face, throat and tongue, which may make it difficult to breathe. Such patients need to stop taking this medication and call a doctor right away so the symptoms can be treated and a different medication prescribed.

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    • Nausea is a common side effect of desmopressin.
      By: carla9
      Nausea is a common side effect of desmopressin.
    • Some individuals may experience hives as part of an allergic reaction to desmopressin.
      By: Rob Byron
      Some individuals may experience hives as part of an allergic reaction to desmopressin.
    • Most side effects associated with desmopression are mild and include headaches and nausea.
      By: memo
      Most side effects associated with desmopression are mild and include headaches and nausea.