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Generic Name: mannitol (MAN it ol)
Brand Name: Osmitrol

Medically reviewed by on Jan 14, 2019 – Written by Cerner Multum

What is Osmitrol?

Osmitrol is a diuretic that is used to reduce swelling and pressure inside the eye or around the brain.

Osmitrol is also used to help your body produce more urine. Osmitrol is used in people with kidney failure, to remove excess water and toxins from the body.

Osmitrol is sometimes given so that your body will produce enough urine to be collected and tested. This helps your doctor determine if your kidneys are working properly.

Osmitrol may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important Information

You should not receive Osmitrol if you have severe kidney disease, lung swelling or congestion, severe heart failure, severe dehydration, bleeding in your brain not caused by surgery, or if your kidneys have already shut down and you are unable to urinate.

Before taking this medicine

You should not receive Osmitrol if you are allergic to it, or if you have:

  • severe or long-term kidney disease;

  • swelling or congestion in your lungs;

  • severe heart failure;

  • bleeding in your brain that is not related to surgery;

  • severe dehydration; or

  • if your kidneys have already shut down and you are unable to urinate.

Tell your doctor if you have ever had:

  • kidney disease;

  • heart disease; or

  • an electrolyte imbalance (such as low levels of potassium or sodium in your blood).

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.

How is Osmitrol given?

Osmitrol is given as an infusion into a vein. A healthcare provider will give you this injection.

Osmitrol must be given slowly, and you may receive the medication around the clock.

You will need frequent medical tests to be sure Osmitrol is not causing harmful effects. This will also help your doctor determine how long to treat you with Osmitrol.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Because you will receive Osmitrol in a clinical setting, you are not likely to miss a dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include confusion, severe weakness, vomiting, loss of coordination, sweating, chest pain, severe shortness of breath, and fainting.

What should I avoid after receiving Osmitrol?

Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.

Osmitrol side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Tell your caregivers right away if you have:

  • swelling in your hands or lower legs, rapid weight gain;

  • little or no urination;

  • shortness of breath (even while lying down);

  • wheezing, gasping for breath, cough with foamy mucus;

  • chest pain, fast heartbeats;

  • headache, or feeling like you might pass out;

  • a seizure;

  • painful or difficult urination;

  • pain, bruising, irritation, or skin changes where the injection was given;

  • dehydration symptoms--feeling very thirsty or hot, being unable to urinate, heavy sweating, or hot and dry skin; or

  • signs of an electrolyte imbalance--increased thirst or urination, confusion, vomiting, constipation, muscle pain or weakness, leg cramps, bone pain, lack of energy, irregular heartbeats, tingly feeling.

Common side effects may include:

  • increased urination;

  • nausea, vomiting;

  • fever, chills, headache, runny nose;

  • chest pain;

  • rash; or

  • dizziness, blurred vision.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect Osmitrol?

Osmitrol can harm your kidneys, especially if you also use certain medicines for infections, cancer, osteoporosis, organ transplant rejection, bowel disorders, or pain or arthritis (including aspirin, Tylenol, Advil, and Aleve).

Tell your doctor about all your other medicines, especially a diuretic or "water pill."

Other drugs may affect Osmitrol, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.