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Descriptions of Desmopressin

Desmopressin is used to treat central cranial diabetes insipidus. This is a condition that causes the body to lose too much fluid and become dehydrated. It is also used to control bedwetting (nocturnal enuresis), and the frequent urination and increased thirst caused by certain types of brain injury or brain surgery.

Desmopressin is similar to a hormone that is produced in the body. It acts on the kidneys to reduce the flow of urine.

Why is this medication prescribed?

Desmopressin is used to control the symptoms of a certain type of diabetes insipidus ('water diabetes'; condition in which the body produces an abnormally large amount of urine). Desmopressin is also used to control excessive thirst and the passage of an abnormally large amount of urine that may occur after a head injury or after certain types of surgery. Desmopressin is also used to control bed-wetting. Desmopressin is in a class of medications called hormones. It works by replacing vasopressin, a hormone that is normally produced in the body to help balance the amount of water and salt.

How It Works

Desmopressin is a synthetic analog of endogenous vasopressin (Anti-Diuretic Hormone). Vasopressin is synthesized in the hypothalamus and released by the posterior pituitary in response to dehydration, and functions by increasing water reabsorption in the renal distal convoluted tubules and collecting ducts. It also increases sodium absorption in the loop of Henle, which allows greater concentration of the urine through countercurrent multiplication.

How should this medicine be used?

Desmopressin comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken two to three times a day. When desmopressin is used to treat bed-wetting, it is usually taken once a day at bedtime. Try to take desmopressin at around the same time(s) every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take desmopressin exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.

Your doctor may start you on a low dose of desmopressin and gradually increase your dose. Follow these directions carefully.

How is this medicine (Desmopressin Tablets) best taken?

Use this medicine (desmopressin tablets) as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

You may need to watch how much fluid you drink while taking this medicine (desmopressin tablets). Follow what your doctor has told you about how much fluid you can drink and how much physical activity you can have. If you have questions, talk with your doctor.

If using this medicine (desmopressin tablets) for bedwetting or to prevent waking up at night to pass urine, empty your bladder right before bedtime. Do not drink alcohol or caffeine before bedtime. Follow what your doctor has told you to do about drinking fluids close to bedtime.

Take at bedtime for bedwetting.

Pregnancy and Desmopressin

Desmopressin isn't likely to harm an unborn baby.

Still, you should tell your doctor if you're pregnant, or plan to become pregnant, before taking this medicine.

It's not known whether desmopressin passes into breast milk or could hurt a nursing baby.

Talk to your doctor before breastfeeding while taking desmopressin.