Compare Hectorol vs. Zemplar

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

ADVERTISEMENT

Zemplar (paricalcitol)

Prescription only
Raises Vitamin D levels.

Hectorol (Doxercalciferol) works well for people with low vitamin D in kidney disease, but you'll need regular blood tests and you have to avoid certain antacids.

3.1/ 5 average rating with 37 reviewsforHectorol
Treats high parathyroid hormone levels.

Zemplar (paricalcitol) works well to lower parathyroid hormone levels in people with chronic kidney disease and is safe for people with high blood calcium levels, but can be more expensive than alternatives.

Upsides
  • Effective for treating overactive parathyroid glands due to kidney disease.
  • Available as a generic.
  • Available as either an oral capsule or an IV solution.
  • It's made from the plant-based version of vitamin D, so it's useful for vegetarians.
  • Works well to lower parathyroid hormone levels.
  • Less likely to raise your blood calcium and phosphorus levels compared to other medicines in its class.
  • More convenient dosing than other medicines, like phosphate binders.
Downsides
  • Your doctor will want to take blood tests to make sure that your body is responding to the medication.
  • Your doctor may prescribe other medications to make sure other chemicals (phosphate and calcium) in your body remain in balance.
  • Can interact with antacids that contain magnesium.
  • Because Zemplar (paricalcitol) can affect your blood calcium and phosphorus levels, you may need more blood tests and doctor follow-up visits than alternative medicines.
  • Both the brand and generic forms of Zemplar (paricalcitol) can be more expensive compared to similar medicines.
ADVERTISEMENT
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Intravenous (IV) solution
  • Pill
Price
Want to save even more money?
Sign up now for a 30-day trial and save up to 95% at CVS, Kroger, Albertsons, and other pharmacies.
Learn more
Reviews
37 reviews so far
43%
saidit'sworth it
30%
saiditworked well
19%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Hectorol (Doxercalciferol)?

Leave a review
Not enough review data.Leave a review
Side effects
The Hectorol (Doxercalciferol) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
31possible side effects
  • Diarrhea
    7%
  • Viral infection
    7%
  • High blood pressure
    7%
  • Nausea
    6%
  • Swelling
    6%
  • Allergic reaction
    6%
  • Feeling of spinning
    5%
  • Vomiting
    5%
  • Joint inflammation
    5%
  • Dizziness
    5%
  • Headache
    5%
  • Low blood pressure
    5%
  • Stomach discomfort
    4%
  • Constipation
    4%
  • Pain
    4%
  • Throat pain
    4%
  • Rash
    4%
  • Chest pain
    3%
  • Fungal infection
    3%
  • Stomach flu
    3%
  • Infection
    3%
  • Common cold symptoms
    3%
  • Urinary tract infection
    3%
  • Dehydration
    3%
  • Back pain
    3%
  • Muscle spasms
    3%
  • Fainting
    3%
  • Depression
    3%
  • Cough
    3%
  • Itching
    3%
  • Skin ulcers
    3%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • High calcium in the blood
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • High blood calcium levels
    • Taking too much vitamin D
  • Interaction with digoxin
    • Taking digoxin
  • High aluminum levels
    • Aluminum-containing medicines
See more detailed risks and warnings