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

Medically reviewed by on Sep 24, 2018 – Written by Cerner Multum

What is Osmitrol?

Osmitrol is a diuretic.

Osmitrol is used to force urine production in people with acute (sudden) kidney failure. Increased urine production helps to keep the kidneys from shutting down, and also speeds up elimination of certain toxic substances in the body.

Osmitrol is also used to reduce swelling and pressure inside the eye or around the brain.

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 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;

  • 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.

To make sure Osmitrol is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • a history of kidney disease;

  • heart disease; or

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

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether Osmitrol will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using Osmitrol.

It is not known whether mannitol passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How is Osmitrol given?

Osmitrol is injected into a vein through an IV. A healthcare provider will give you this injection.

Osmitrol must be given slowly through an IV infusion, and you may receive the medication around the clock.

To be sure Osmitrol is helping your condition and not causing harmful effects, your blood will need to be tested often. This will help your doctor determine how long to treat you with this medicine. Your heart function will also need to be tested.

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?

Since Osmitrol is given by a healthcare professional in a medical setting, an overdose is unlikely to occur.

What should I avoid while 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 any of these 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 feet;

  • anxiety, sweating, severe shortness of breath, cough with foamy mucus, chest pain;

  • painful or difficult urination;

  • a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out;

  • pain, burning, 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;

  • signs of an electrolyte imbalance--dry mouth, increased thirst, confusion, fast heart rate, increased urination, muscle pain or weakness, feeling light-headed, fainting, or seizure (convulsions); or

  • signs of a kidney problem--little or no urinating; painful or difficult urination; swelling in your feet or ankles; feeling tired or short of breath.

Common side effects may include:

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?

Other drugs may interact with mannitol, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use now 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.