This page contains brief details about the drug , it's indication, dosage & administaration, mechanism of action, related brands with strength, warnings and common side effects.

Background and Date of Approval

Vasopressin was initially approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on 2014.

Mechanism of Action of undefined

Vasopressin binds to V2 receptors in the kidneys to increase water reabsorption, reducing urine output in diabetes insipidus. In cardiac arrest, it targets V1 receptors in blood vessels, causing vasoconstriction, elevating blood pressure, and improving blood flow during resuscitation. In severe hemorrhagic shock, its vasoconstrictive effects help maintain blood pressure and support vital organ perfusion until definitive treatment can be provided. Proper monitoring and dosing are essential due to their potent cardiovascular effects.

Uses of undefined

Vasopressin is primarily employed to treat diabetes insipidus, a condition characterized by excessive thirst and urination due to a deficiency of the hormone. Additionally, this medication is utilized during certain cases of cardiac arrest as an alternative to epinephrine in resuscitation attempts. In severe hemorrhagic shock, it is administered to support blood pressure and vital organ perfusion. Furthermore, this medication plays a role in regulating social behaviors and bonding in animals, although its full extent in humans is still being researched.

undefined Drug administaration and Dosage available

Vasopressin can be administered through various routes, including intravenous (IV), intramuscular (IM), subcutaneous (SC), and intranasal, depending on the medical condition and the need for rapid or sustained effects. Proper administration should be done under the supervision of healthcare professionals to ensure safety and effectiveness.

Warnings, Precautions and Side Effects of undefined


Vasopressin can cause severe allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis. Its vasoconstrictive properties can cause changes in blood pressure and heart rate. This medication can lead to water retention and hyponatremia (low sodium levels). This medication can cause fluid retention, leading to potential fluid overload.Its effects on water reabsorption may be altered in patients with renal impairment. Prolonged use or high doses of this medication may lead to tolerance.


Vasopressin should be cautiously administered, and patients should be monitored for signs of allergic reactions during treatment. It should be used cautiously in patients with cardiovascular conditions or a history of heart disease. This medicine can lead to water retention and hyponatremia (low sodium levels).  It should be used with caution in patients at risk of fluid imbalances. Close monitoring of kidney function is essential during treatment. Patients require careful monitoring and potential dosage adjustments. 

Side Effects

Side effects of vasopressin can include severe allergic reactions, chest pain or irregular heartbeats, confusion or changes in mental state, seizures, and severe abdominal pain or cramping. Common side effects may include nausea, stomach cramps, headache, dizziness, runny or stuffy nose, increased thirst, and water retention. If any severe or concerning side effects occur, seek immediate medical attention.

Word Of Advice

Caution should be exercised to monitor for severe allergic reactions, cardiovascular effects, and hyponatremia. Special care is required for patients with hepatic or renal impairment, the elderly, and pediatric patients, as they may have altered responses. During pregnancy and breastfeeding, the use of vasopressin should be approached cautiously, and potential drug interactions need to be considered. Excessive dosing or prolonged use might lead to tolerance and overdose risks. Patients with cardiovascular diseases, allergies to oxytocin, or epilepsy require close monitoring. Proper administration, dilution, and monitoring of intravenous infusions are essential, and intranasal formulations must adhere to recommended dosages to avoid complications. Awareness of the risk of water intoxication and gangrene is crucial, as is monitoring peripheral circulation. Psychological effects and potential impacts on social behaviors necessitate vigilance in patients with psychiatric conditions. Careful assessment and active patient involvement are fundamental in ensuring the safe and effective use of this medication.

Frequently Asked Question


  1. KD Tripathi, Essentials of Medical Pharmacology, Antidiuretic drugs, 7th edition, 2013, 593-596.
  2. Goodman & Gilman’s, The Pharmacological Basis of Therapeutics, Regulation of renal function and vascular volume, 12th edition, 2011, 701-713.
  3. Mercury Pharmaceutical Ltd, Electronic medicines compendium (emc), [ Revised on27th  May 2022)] [ Accessed on 29th May 2023], 
  4. American Regent, US Food and Drug Administration, [ Revised on August 2020] [ Accessed on 29th July], 


The drug information on this page is not a substitute for medical advice, it is meant for educational purposes only. For further details, consult your doctor about your medical condition to know if you can receive this treatment.