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Invega Sustenna (Generic Paliperidone Injection)

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Invega Sustenna is an antipsychotic medication used to treat conditions such as schizophrenia. While it can be effective in managing symptoms, like any medication, it carries certain risks. Here are some of the potential risks associated with taking Invega Sustenna:

  • Side Effects: Invega Sustenna may cause various side effects, including drowsiness, dizziness, weight gain, increased appetite, constipation, dry mouth, blurred vision, and restlessness. These side effects can vary in severity and may impact an individual’s daily functioning.
  • Extrapyramidal Symptoms (EPS): EPS are movement disorders that can occur as a result of taking antipsychotic medications like Invega Sustenna. These symptoms may include tremors, muscle stiffness, restlessness, and uncontrollable movements. The risk of EPS is higher with higher doses of the medication.
  • Metabolic Changes: Invega Sustenna has been associated with metabolic changes such as weight gain, increased cholesterol levels, and elevated blood sugar levels. These changes can potentially increase the risk of developing conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease.
  • Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome (NMS): Although rare, Invega Sustenna has been linked to a serious condition called neuroleptic malignant syndrome. NMS is characterized by symptoms such as high fever, muscle stiffness, confusion, irregular heart rate, and changes in blood pressure. It requires immediate medical attention.
  • Prolongation of QT Interval: In some cases, Invega Sustenna can cause an abnormality in the electrical activity of the heart, leading to a prolonged QT interval. This can potentially increase the risk of serious heart rhythm abnormalities, including a life-threatening condition called torsades de pointes.
  • Hyperprolactinemia: Invega Sustenna can cause increased levels of prolactin, a hormone responsible for breast development and milk production in women. This may result in symptoms such as breast enlargement, abnormal milk production, and menstrual irregularities.

It is important to note that the risks and side effects mentioned above are not exhaustive, and individual experiences may vary. If you are considering or currently taking Invega Sustenna, it is crucial to have open and regular discussions with your healthcare provider about the potential risks and benefits of the medication. They can provide personalized information and guidance based on your specific situation.

Why is this medication prescribed?

Invega Sustenna is prescribed for the treatment of certain mental health conditions, primarily schizophrenia. It belongs to a class of medications called atypical antipsychotics. It works by affecting the balance of certain chemicals in the brain, specifically dopamine and serotonin, which helps reduce the symptoms associated with schizophrenia. The medication is typically administered as a long-acting injectable formulation, meaning it is given as an injection into a muscle (usually the deltoid or gluteal muscle). It is usually given once a month or every few weeks, depending on the individual’s needs and the dosage prescribed by the healthcare provider.

How should this medicine be used?

Invega Sustenna is a long-acting injectable medication that is used to treat certain mental health conditions, primarily schizophrenia. Here are some guidelines on how Invega Sustenna should be used:

  • Administration: Invega Sustenna is administered as an intramuscular injection, meaning it is injected into a muscle. The injection is typically given in the deltoid (upper arm) or gluteal (buttock) muscle. The injection should only be performed by a healthcare professional who is trained in the proper technique.
  • Dosage and Schedule: The exact dosage and administration schedule will be determined by the prescribing healthcare provider based on individual factors such as the severity of symptoms, response to the medication, and other personal considerations. Invega Sustenna is usually given once a month or every few weeks. It is important to follow the prescribed dosage and schedule strictly and not to adjust or discontinue the medication without consulting with a healthcare professional.
  • Monitoring: Regular monitoring is important during the course of treatment with Invega Sustenna. This may include evaluating the individual’s symptoms, side effects, and overall response to the medication. It is essential to maintain open and regular communication with the prescribing healthcare provider to address any concerns and adjust the treatment plan as needed.
  • Adherence: It is crucial to adhere to the prescribed treatment plan and not miss any scheduled injections. Invega Sustenna is a long-acting medication that provides sustained release of the active ingredient over a specific period. Missing or delaying injections may compromise the effectiveness of the medication and impact symptom control.
  • Other Medications: Invega Sustenna should be used as part of a comprehensive treatment plan for the management of schizophrenia or other indicated conditions. It is important to inform the healthcare provider about all other medications being taken, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, and supplements, to avoid any potential interactions or complications.

Always consult with a healthcare professional for specific instructions and guidance on the proper use of Invega Sustenna based on your individual circumstances. They will provide personalized information and monitor your progress throughout the treatment.

Other uses for this medicine

Invega Sustenna is primarily used for the treatment of schizophrenia. However, it may also be prescribed for other conditions off-label, which means its use in these cases is not officially approved by regulatory authorities. Some off-label uses of Invega Sustenna may include the treatment of bipolar disorder and schizoaffective disorder. It is important to note that the use of Invega Sustenna for off-label purposes should be done under the guidance and supervision of a healthcare professional.

What special precautions should I follow?

When using Invega Sustenna, there are several special precautions that need to be considered:

  • Allergies: Inform your healthcare provider if you have any known allergies to paliperidone or other antipsychotic medications. Invega Sustenna should not be used if there is a known hypersensitivity to the active ingredient or any of its components.
  • Medical Conditions: It is important to disclose any medical conditions or history of medical conditions to your healthcare provider before starting Invega Sustenna. This includes conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, liver or kidney problems, seizures, low white blood cell count, or a history of neuroleptic malignant syndrome.
  • Elderly Population: In elderly individuals, Invega Sustenna should be used with caution due to an increased risk of side effects such as stroke, pneumonia, and confusion.
  • Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: The safety of Invega Sustenna during pregnancy or breastfeeding has not been well established. If you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding, it is important to discuss the potential risks and benefits with your healthcare provider.
  • Driving and Operating Machinery: Invega Sustenna may cause drowsiness, dizziness, or other side effects that can impair your ability to drive or operate machinery safely. It is important to assess how the medication affects you personally and avoid these activities if you experience significant impairment.
  • Interactions with Other Medications: Invega Sustenna can interact with other medications, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, and supplements. It is important to inform your healthcare provider about all the medications you are taking to prevent any potential interactions.

These are general precautions, and individual circumstances may vary. Always consult with a healthcare professional for specific guidance and recommendations based on your personal medical history and needs when considering or using Invega Sustenna.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

There are no specific dietary restrictions associated with Invega Sustenna. However, it’s always a good idea to maintain a balanced and healthy diet to support overall well-being.

What should I do if I forget a dose?

If you forget to take a dose of Invega Sustenna, it’s essential to contact your healthcare professional for guidance. They will be able to provide you with specific instructions based on your situation. It’s generally recommended to follow your regular dosing schedule, but your healthcare professional may advise you on the best course of action to take.

What side effects can this medication cause?

Invega Sustenna (paliperidone palmitate) can cause various side effects. It’s important to note that not everyone will experience these side effects, and their severity can vary from person to person. Common side effects of Invega Sustenna may include:

  • Injection site reactions: Pain, swelling, redness, or itching at the injection site are common. These reactions are usually mild and temporary.
  • Extrapyramidal symptoms (EPS): These are movement disorders that can include muscle stiffness, tremors, restlessness, and involuntary movements. The risk of EPS is generally lower with Invega Sustenna compared to some other antipsychotic medications.
  • Weight gain: Invega Sustenna can cause weight gain, which may be a concern for some individuals. It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet and regular exercise, to help manage weight.
  • Increased prolactin levels: Invega Sustenna can lead to increased levels of the hormone prolactin. This may cause symptoms such as breast enlargement, breast discharge, or menstrual changes in females, and decreased libido or erectile dysfunction in males.
  • Sedation and drowsiness: Invega Sustenna can cause drowsiness or sedation, which may affect your ability to perform certain activities. It is recommended to avoid driving or operating heavy machinery until you know how the medication affects you.
  • Dizziness: Some individuals may experience dizziness while taking Invega Sustenna. It is important to get up slowly from a sitting or lying position to minimize the risk of falling.
  • Orthostatic hypotension: Invega Sustenna can cause a drop in blood pressure upon standing, leading to lightheadedness or fainting. Taking precautions like standing up slowly can help reduce the risk.
  • Metabolic changes: Invega Sustenna may cause metabolic changes, such as increased blood sugar levels or increased cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Regular monitoring of blood sugar and lipid levels may be necessary.
  • Other side effects: Additional side effects that may occur include dry mouth, constipation, nausea, vomiting, headache, anxiety, blurred vision, and difficulty sleeping.

It is important to report any side effects you experience to your healthcare provider. They can provide guidance on managing side effects and adjust your treatment if necessary. It’s worth noting that some side effects of Invega Sustenna, such as EPS or increased prolactin levels, may be more common in the first few weeks of treatment but often improve over time.

What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?

When handling and storing Invega Sustenna, it is important to follow the instructions provided by your healthcare professional. Here are some general guidelines:

  • Storage: Invega Sustenna should be stored at room temperature, typically between 68°F and 77°F (20°C and 25°C). Keep it in the original packaging until ready to use.
  • Disposal: Proper disposal of medication is important to prevent accidental ingestion by others. If you have any leftover or expired Invega Sustenna, consult your healthcare provider, pharmacist, or local waste disposal authority for guidance on how to safely dispose of it.

In case of emergency/overdose

In case of an emergency or overdose involving Invega Sustenna, it is crucial to seek immediate medical assistance. Contact your local emergency services or go to the nearest emergency room. It is also recommended to do the following:

  • Call a poison control center: In the United States, you can reach the Poison Help hotline at 1-800-222-1222. They can provide further guidance on what steps to take.
  • Provide information: Be prepared to provide information such as the name of the medication, the dosage strength, the amount taken, and the time of ingestion. This will help healthcare professionals assess the situation and provide appropriate treatment.
  • Follow medical advice: Cooperate fully with healthcare professionals and follow their instructions. They may administer treatment to address the overdose or any potential complications.

What other information should I know?

It is essential to inform your healthcare provider about any other medications, supplements, or medical conditions you have before starting Invega Sustenna. They can provide you with detailed information about the drug, potential side effects, drug interactions, and any precautions specific to your situation.

Regularly attending follow-up appointments with your healthcare provider is important to monitor your progress and address any concerns or questions you may have. If you experience any adverse effects or have questions about the medication, promptly consult your healthcare provider.

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