Renagel is the brand name version of a medication called Sevelamer. It’s a phosphate binder. It’s able to help in the prevention of hypocalcemia (low levels of calcium inside the body) which are brought on by heightened levels of phosphorus.
Renagel can be used in order to help regulate phosphorus levels in people who have chronic kidney disease and are on dialysis. There are other uses for this medication not mentioned here.
What are some of the serious potential side effects if you decide to use this medicational treatment?
Black, bloody, or tarry stools
Constipation that gets worse or does not clear up
Severe constipation with stomach pain
Fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms
What are some of the more common potential side affects you might be at risk for if you use this medication?
Nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, loss of appetite
Upset stomach, gas, bloating
Diarrhea, mild constipation
Can a drug such as Renagel be taken on a short term basis, just until you were sure of whether or not it would work for you?
When you’re taking a drug for the first time you might be scared of how you’ll react to it. In many cases you just don’t want to take something you can’t be sure is going to work for you the way you want it to. Some doctors try to protect you by being willing to test you on certain medications. Now this isn’t something they’ll do on a consistent basis, because this can also be risky.
But when a doctor isn’t sure about a certain medication or when you show strongly that you believe something can work for you, then they might be more willing to test you out on it. This can work for you in several ways when it comes to using something such as Renagel. First, you get the chance to try out a drug only for a short period of time. You don’t have to commit to it long term.
Second, if something were missed in the evaluation process (the screening a doctor would do to make sure you were fine to use the drug) then it can be caught early on and you could be taken off the drug. Third, you can monitor how you feel on it. This means in addition to a doctor checking to see how you respond to the drug as far as your condition is concerned, they can look at how it makes you feel generally.
All of this is very important if the goal was going to be to take the drug on a long term basis. You just have to be careful that the goal was to only test the drug and then try to see if you could test others. Once again, no doctor would want to establish a reputation for giving out prescriptions too easily or not requiring patients to commit to the medications they did give them. So if a test of something like Renagel was allowed by a doctor, it would be an exception but not the rule. Testing might also be important in cases where you might have had bad experiences with similar medications in the past.