Calcitriol Capsules

Calcitriol is a medication that treats low calcium levels caused by kidney disease. It can also treat parathyroid gland conditions. Calcitriol increases the amount of calcium (vitamin D) in your body and helps regulate parathyroid levels. The brand name of this medication is Rocaltrol®.

What is this medication?

CALCITRIOL (kal si TRYE ole) prevents and treats low calcium levels in people with kidney disease. It may also be used in people with parathyroid gland conditions. It works by increasing the amount of calcium in your body. It also helps regulate parathyroid hormone levels. It is a form of vitamin D.

This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.



Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy

What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?

They need to know if you have any of the following conditions:

  • Kidney disease
  • Parathyroid disease
  • Receiving dialysis treatment
  • An unusual or allergic reaction to calcitriol, vitamin D, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • Breast-feeding

How should I use this medication?

Take this medication by mouth with a glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Take your medication at regular intervals. Do not take your medication more often than directed.

Talk to your care team regarding the use of this medication in children. While this drug may be prescribed for children as young as 1 year old for selected conditions, precautions do apply.

Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.

NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.


What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medication?

Do not take this medication with any of the following:

  • Burosumab
  • Vitamin D

This medication may also interact with the following:

  • Calcium supplements
  • Cholestyramine
  • Corticosteroids
  • Digoxin
  • Ketoconazole
  • Magnesium supplements
  • Phenobarbital
  • Phenytoin
  • Phosphate-binding agents
  • Some antacids
  • Thiazide diuretics

This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.


What should I watch for while using this medication?

Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. You will need to have important lab work done while you are taking this medication.

You will need to be on a special diet while you are taking this medication. Do not take any non-prescription medications that have vitamin D, phosphorus, magnesium, or calcium including antacids, unless directed by your care team. Limit the amount of calcium you get each day as directed. The extra supplements can cause side effects.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?

Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:

  • Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Heart rhythm changes—fast or irregular heartbeat, dizziness, feeling faint or lightheaded, chest pain, trouble breathing
  • High calcium level—increased thirst or amount of urine, nausea, vomiting, confusion, unusual weakness or fatigue, bone pain
  • High phosphorus level—muscle pain or cramps, bone or joint pain, numbness and tingling around the mouth

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):

  • Dry mouth
  • Headache
  • Loss of appetite
  • Metallic taste in mouth
  • Upset stomach

This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Where should I keep my medication?

Keep out of the reach of children and pets.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Protect from light. Keep container tightly closed. Throw away any unused medication after the expiration date.

NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.

Copyright ©2024 Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Terms of use.

Note: Introduction and Additional Common Questions written and medically approved by Cleveland Clinic professionals.

Call Appointment Center 866.320.4573
Questions 216.444.2200