Desmopressin DDAVP treatment

This patient information aims to provide patients with information following administration of DDAVP (Desmopressin).

Desmopressin DDAVP treatmentTo view a PDF you may need to download Adobe Reader.

Patient information regarding treatment with DDAVP/Octim (Desmopressin)

This patient information aims to provide patients with information following administration of DDAVP (Desmopressin).  Desmopressin, a synthetic vasopressin analogue that increases endogenous factor VIII and Von Willebrand factor by releasing both from the patients’ storage pool.  It is the treatment of choice, where sufficiently effective, for bleeding episodes and surgical prophylaxis.

Definition of Patient Group – Patients with Mild Haemophilia A, Von Willebrands disease and Platelet Function Disorders.

Contraindications to the use of Desmopressin:

Uncontrolled Hypertension, Cardiac insufficiency, Ischaemic heart disease, treatment with diuretics.  Cerebrovascular disease and Habitual and Psychogenic polydipsia.


Type 2B and 2N Von Willebrand disease. In type 2B VwD the release of the abnormal VWF may induce platelet aggregation and thrombocytopenia.  In 2N VwD the short half-life of the FVIII response should be taken into account.

Pregnancy small oxytocic effect in third trimester; increased risk of pre-eclampsia.  Lactation

Caution with older patients.

Avoid under 2 years of age.


It may be given by injection either into a vein (intravenously) or under the surface of the skin (subcutaneous injection).  Inhaled through the nostrils (intranasal spray).

Once the patient has received the DDAVP he/she will be instructed to restrict their fluid intake to 1.5 litres for the following 24 hours. This is because DDAVP has an effect on fluid retention within the body making the individual retain body fluid for a while.

Side-effects fluid retention and hyponatraemia (in more serious cases with convulsions) on administration without restricting fluid intake.

Stomach pain, headache, nausea, may occur post treatment. Decreased blood pressure and facial flushing can also occur.

Emergency Telephone Numbers

Haemophilia Centre

9am to 5pm Monday to Friday

Work mobile: 07393 238006

Department:  Haemophilia Centre, Clinic 7

Site:  Lincoln County Hospital