Cystic Fibrosis Home > Kalydeco Side Effects

There are some potentially serious problems that may occur with Kalydeco, such as liver damage and allergic reactions. Although these complications may require medical treatment, most reactions to this cystic fibrosis drug tend to be minor and easy for you or your healthcare provider to treat. Some of the more common side effects of Kalydeco include headaches, diarrhea, and nausea.

An Introduction to Kalydeco Side Effects

Just like any medicine, Kalydeco™ (ivacaftor) can cause side effects. However, not everyone who takes the drug will have problems. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or are treated easily by you or your healthcare provider.
 
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with Kalydeco. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)
 

Common Side Effects of Kalydeco

Kalydeco has been studied extensively in clinical trials. In these studies, one group of people received the real medication, while another group was given a placebo (a "sugar pill" that does not contain any active ingredients). As a result, it is possible to see what Kalydeco side effects occurred, how often they appeared, and how they compared to the group who took the placebo.
 
In these studies, the most common Kalydeco side effects included:
 
  • Headache -- in up to 24 percent of people
  • Throat pain -- up to 22 percent
  • Upper respiratory tract infection (such as the common cold) -- up to 22 percent
  • Nasal congestion -- up to 20 percent
  • Abdominal (stomach) pain -- up to 26 percent
  • Stuffy/runny nose and a sore throat -- up to 15 percent
  • Diarrhea -- up to 13 percent
  • Rash -- up to 13 percent
  • Nausea -- up to 12 percent
  • Dizziness -- up to 9 percent.
 
Other common Kalydeco side effects, occurring in 4 percent to 7 percent of people, included but were not limited to:
 
  • Increased blood sugar levels
  • Joint pain
  • Chest pain
  • Muscle pain
  • Sinus headache
  • Sinus congestion
  • Wheezing
  • Acne.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
List of references (click here):
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