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Take charge of phosphorus while on dialysis with fewer pills and more ways to take them

On dialysis?

Learn more about phosphorus

On Velphoro too?

Get the most out of it

What’s phosphorus?

Mashed Potatoes

Reading food labels for phosphorus


Sometimes phosphorus is listed on food labels. Sometimes it’s not. “Phosphorus” and “phosphate” are basically two words for the same thing.

Many foods contain the mineral phosphorus. You need a certain amount to stay healthy. If you’re on dialysis, too much phosphorus can affect your overall health.

Your doctor will tell you your personal phosphorus goal, but a serum phosphorus level of 5.5 mg/dL or less—determined by a blood test—is a widely accepted benchmark.

Controlling phosphorus starts with diet

Your renal dietitian will help you with a food plan that’s low in phosphorus. But you may need additional help. That’s why there’s Velphoro.

Find out more about phosphorus in foods by downloading this food label guide

Carry this guide with you when making food choices at the store.

Eating out? Choose low phosphorus foods from the menu

Here is a handy guide to help you choose the lowest phosphorus foods on the menu.

How Velphoro works

Velphoro is a phosphate binder. Because it’s the strongest one, you can take fewer pills. Velphoro is like a magnet that pulls the phosphorus out of food as you eat it. That’s why you take it with food when you eat.

Remember: Velphoro only works when you take it with food!

How to take Velphoro

Take Velphoro when you eat a meal or snack as prescribed by your doctor. You’ll probably start on Velphoro with 1 pill every time you eat a meal. Your doctor may adjust the dose after tracking your progress.

Chew, break, or crush Velphoro. It’s up to you.






You choose how to take it

Velphoro is easy to break, chew, or crush. Take it just before, during, or just after a meal or snack.

Don’t swallow Velphoro whole. If you forget to take Velphoro, take your regular dose with your next meal.

Always keep Velphoro close by

Taking Velphoro with meals is the best way to make sure it works. Try these to help you remember:

  • Put a sticky note on your refrigerator
  • Keep Velphoro on your kitchen table
  • Program your phone with an alarm 3 times a day
  • Ask your healthcare team for their favorite tips

What to expect from Velphoro: Possible side effects

Most patients reported no side effects with Velphoro, but some did. But there’s no substitute for being prepared, just in case.

Side effects of Velphoro are mostly mild and go away on their own after a short time.

Most common is diarrhea, which usually resolves by itself. Some people have reported discoloration of their teeth, or a rash. Because Velphoro is made from iron, it may turn your stools black. This is normal—and harmless—just as it is with other medicines that contain iron.

Few people have stopped taking Velphoro because of side effects. Speak to your healthcare team if side effects become a concern.

Velphoro is affordable—or free—for most people

If you have health insurance, your healthcare plan most likely covers Velphoro. Most people pay less than $10 per prescription for Velphoro.

If you have trouble paying for your Velphoro prescription, help is available regardless of your insurance coverage.*

Talk to your healthcare team for more information on copay savings and other programs offered by Velphoro Access Solutions.

  • *Patients with commercial health insurance may be eligible for PAP program if out-of-pocket costs are deemed too high with savings card. Eligibility requirements apply.
Save with the Velphoro CoPay Savings card

Download the Velphoro Copay Savings Card here

Frequently asked questions about Velphoro

What is Velphoro?
Velphoro is a phosphate binder. Taking Velphoro as prescribed, with meals, can help keep your phosphorus under control.
How does Velphoro work?
Velphoro works like a magnet, locking up the phosphorus in the food you eat, so it doesn’t get into your bloodstream and cause dangerous health conditions.
How do I take Velphoro?
Velphoro is chewable. You can chew it, break it, or crush it; it’s up to you. Just “break and take” with meals or snacks as prescribed by your doctor. Velphoro is not intended to be swallowed whole.
How many Velphoro tablets should I take?
Take the number your doctor prescribed. You’ll probably start on Velphoro with 1 pill every time you eat a meal. Based on your progress, your doctor may adjust the dose.
What are the most common side effects of Velphoro?
Most side effects from Velphoro are mild, and usually resolve by themselves. People report diarrhea as the most common side effect, as well as nausea, stained teeth, and rash. Like other medicines containing iron, Velphoro may turn your stools dark. That’s normal, and not cause for alarm.
Can I take Velphoro with other medications?
Yes, Velphoro can be taken with most medicines. While Velphoro has few drug interactions, some medicines should not be taken at the same time as Velphoro, because it might change their effectiveness. Your healthcare team will advise you.
What if I miss a dose of Velphoro?
Velphoro works by locking up the phosphorus in the food you eat as you eat it. So if you miss a dose, just take your next dose with your next meal as usual.
Will my insurance plan cover Velphoro?
Most health plans cover Velphoro. Most people who take Velphoro pay less than $10 per prescription with the Velphoro Copay Savings Card. If you have trouble paying for your Velphoro prescription, Velphoro Access Solutions has programs that may help. Talk to your healthcare team for more information.

News you can use: More resources to help you with Velphoro

Want to learn more about living with chronic kidney disease and dialysis? Here’s a list of free downloads and links to get you started.

Lighten Your Day brochure

Download the Velphoro Patient Brochure for free

Velphoro Quick Start Guide

Download the Velphoro Quick Start Guide for free

Your Guide to Phosphorus brochure

Guide to Phosphorus

Dining Out with Confidence brochure

Dining Out with Confidence brochure download

The American Association of Kidney Patients

Find out more about all aspects of living with dialysis by visiting this comprehensive, helpful, user-friendly site, especially made for people like you.

National Kidney Foundation Patient Newsletter

For current news and the latest research, the National Kidney Foundation is the recognized authority on chronic kidney disease and dialysis. Stay up-to-date and get better educated about kidney disease.


Velphoro (sucroferric oxyhydroxide) is a phosphate binder indicated for the control of serum phosphorus levels in patients with chronic kidney disease on dialysis.

Important Safety Information

Velphoro chewable tablets must be taken with meals. Velphoro should be chewed or crushed. Do not swallow whole. Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and other supplements. Velphoro can interact with other medicines.

Tell your healthcare provider if you have any of the following: peritonitis (an infection) during peritoneal dialysis, significant gastric or liver disorder, recent major gastrointestinal (GI) surgery, a history of hemochromatosis or other disease that results in iron build-up in the body. People with these conditions were not included in clinical studies with Velphoro, and your healthcare provider will monitor your iron levels while you are taking Velphoro.

Velphoro can cause side effects. The most common side effects are discolored feces, diarrhea, and nausea. Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away. To report negative side effects associated with taking Velphoro, contact Fresenius Medical Care North America (FMCNA) at 1-800-323-5188. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA at:

1-800-FDA-1088 or visit

Before taking Velphoro, tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or breast-feeding.

For more information please see full Prescribing Information.