Generic Name: Fesoterodine
Brand Name: Toviaz
What is Toviaz?
Toviaz is a medication for the treatment of spasms that occur in the bladder muscles. The generic name of Toviaz is fesoterodine. This drug is mostly used for the treatment of an overactive bladder and other accompanying symptoms such as frequent urination, immediate urge to urinate, and urinary incontinence.
Toviaz (fesoterodine) belongs to the anticholinergic subgroup called genitourinary antispasmodics, which work by preventing the contractions of bladder muscles that lead to urine leakage. Thus, this drug helps relax the bladder's smooth muscles. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Toviaz in the year 2008.
The following individuals should avoid taking Toviaz:
- Those who have an untreated or an uncontrolled narrow-angle glaucoma
- Those who have urinary blockage and intestinal or gastrointestinal obstruction
- Those who are allergic to Toviaz or any of its components
While on medication, ensure that you do not get overheated or dehydrated due to hot weather or by carrying out intense exercises. Toviaz is known to reduce the amount of perspiration produced by the body, which would make you more prone to heat stroke.
- Alcohol Intake - The intake of alcohol can lead to an increase in the side effects caused by fesoterodine.
- Other Medications - Inform your doctor about all your medications whether over-the-counter or prescription ones. To avoid any drug interactions, inform your doctor if you have also taken any herbal, dietary, or vitamin supplements. Do start taking new medications without informing your doctor and do not suddenly stop taking Toviaz without your doctor's consent.
- Other Medical Conditions - Talk with your doctor if you have other medical conditions such as other urination problems, glaucoma, myasthenia gravis, severe constipation, kidney problems, liver disease, or a weak output of urine to ensure safety.
- Pregnancy - It is not yet known whether Toviaz can harm an unborn baby. It is important to inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning to conceive.
- Breastfeeding - It is still unknown whether this drug can pass into breast milk and harm the baby in any way. Let your doctor know if you are currently nursing a baby.
- Older Adults - Elderly people who are above the age of 75 are more prone to experiencing the side effects of this drug.
Toviaz should be taken exactly as prescribed by the doctor. You can also follow the detailed instructions indicated on the prescription. Toviaz should be taken once on a daily basis. The doctor can occasionally adjust the dose based on the result and response of the patient. Avoid taking larger or smaller doses of this medicine without your doctor's advice. Toviaz can be taken with or without food.
Do not chew, crush, or break open the extended-release tablet of Toviaz. It should be swallowed as a whole. If you break the pill or open it, then it can lead to too much amount of drug being released all at the same time.
Toviaz is also known to cause vision issues along with impaired thinking or reactions. Individuals who take this medicine should be very careful while driving or carrying out any activities that require mental alertness.
Toviaz should be kept out of reach from children. It must be stored at room temperature and away from direct sunlight or heat. If you missed a dose, then you should take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is already time for the next dose, then skip the missed one and continue with your daily scheduled dose. Avoid taking an additional dose to make up for the missed dose. In case of an overdose, immediate medical attention must be sought.
Toviaz is available in the strengths of 4 mg and 8 mg in the form of extended-release tablets. The recommended dosage for treatment would be 4 mg on a daily basis. However, if the symptoms do not improve, then the doctor can increase the daily dose to 8 mg. Unless prescribed by the doctor, do not take more than 8 mg of Toviaz.
For those who are suffering from liver disease or kidney disorders, the doctor would suggest a lower dose. The doctor will look at various factors before recommending the dosage. Such factors include:
- The age of the individual
- Certain medical conditions
- Severity of the medical condition
- How the body responds to the medicine
- Other medications taken due to other health problems
Adult Dosage (for urinary incontinence)
The initial oral dose should be 4 mg on a daily basis. This dose can then be gradually increased to 8 mg to be taken once a day according to the individual’s response and tolerability.
Adult Dosage (for urinary frequency)
The initial oral dose is 4 mg daily. This dose can then be gradually increased to 8 mg to be taken once a day according to the individual’s response and tolerability.
Seek immediate medical attention if you experience the following allergic reactions after taking Toviaz:
- Swelling of the lips, face, throat, and tongue
- Finding it difficult to breathe
Some of the common side effects of Toviaz are:
- Xerostomia or dry mouth
- Back pain
- Dry eyes
- Having a bad taste in the mouth
- Respiratory tract infection
Most of the time, these side effects are mild and tend to go away once the body becomes used to the medicine. However, if these side effects tend to persist or become worse, consult your doctor right away.
Severe side effects:
- Swelling of the hands and feet
- Painful burning sensation while urinating
- Chest pain
- Heart rate changes
- Severe stomach pain
- Signs of dehydration such as unable to urinate
- Hot or dry skin
- Excessive thirst or feeling too hot
- Excessive sweating
Avoid taking Toviaz if you are taking the following medications:
- Onmel or Sporanox
- Drugs that contain potassium such as potassium phosphate and medications called K-tabs, which contain potassium chloride (Klor Con, Micro-K) and Urocit-K (potassium citrate).
Below are certain drugs that can also lead to severe drug interactions. Thus, they should be taken with caution:
- St. John’s wort
- Rimactane or Rifadin
- Macrolide antibiotics such as Biaxin (clarithromycin) and Ery-Tab (erythromycin)
If someone who is on Toviaz treatment also starts taking alcohol, then it can lead to certain side effects such as constipation, dizziness, headaches, and dry eyes. Drinking alcohol is known to worsen the side effects and cause harm to the body. Hence, it is advisable to limit or avoid the intake of alcohol while taking Toviaz.
Similarly, grapefruit should also be avoided. Avoid eating or drinking grapefruit while on Toviaz treatment since grapefruit is known to slow down the break down of Toviaz in the body. This, in turn, would lead to dangerously increased Toviaz levels in the bloodstream.
Seek immediate medical attention in case of an overdose. However, the symptoms of a Toviaz overdose would vary on every individual. It also depends on how much of the drug was initially taken and whether there was any other substance taken along with it. Overdose symptoms include mouth dryness, finding it difficult to pass urine, dry eyes, and severe constipation. When it comes to treating an overdose, supportive care would be required.