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How does Vistogard work?

Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on Feb 27, 2023.

Official answer


Vistogard (uridine triacetate) works by slowing down cell damage caused by certain cancer medicines (fluorouracil or capecitabine). Uridine, from uridine triacetate, competitively inhibits cell damage and cell death caused by fluorouracil. Uridine triacetate is an acetylated pro-drug of uridine.

What does Vistogard treat?

  • Vistogard is used to treat an overdose of the cancer drugs capecitabine or fluorouracil (5-FU). It’s rare that an overdose of chemotherapy could occur, but toxicity can be fatal.
  • Vistogard is also used in patients who have emergent severe or life-threatening toxicities within four days of receiving capecitabine or fluorouracil. These side effects may include effects on the heart, nervous system, stomach, intestines, or blood cells.
  • It is not known if Vistogard is safe and effective if started more than 4 days (96 hours) after the end of a dose of fluorouracil or capecitabine.

In clinical studies in those treated for overdose or toxicity, 97% and 89% of patients, respectively, were still alive at 30 days.

The most common side effects that occurred in 2% or more of patients receiving Vistogard in clinical trials included vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea.

This is not all the information you need to know about Vistogard (uridine triacetate) for safe and effective use and does not take the place of talking to your doctor about your treatment. Review the full Vistogard information here, and discuss this information and any questions you have with your doctor or other health care provider.


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