EPZICOM

EPZICOM- abacavir sulfate and lamivudine tablet, film coated
ViiV Healthcare Company

WARNING: HYPERSENSITIVITY REACTIONS and EXACERBATIONS OF HEPATITIS B

Hypersensitivity Reactions

Serious and sometimes fatal hypersensitivity reactions, with multiple organ involvement, have occurred with abacavir, a component of EPZICOM (abacavir and lamivudine). Patients who carry the HLAB*5701 allele are at a higher risk of a hypersensitivity reaction to abacavir; although, hypersensitivity reactions have occurred in patients who do not carry the HLAB*5701 allele [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].

EPZICOM is contraindicated in patients with a prior hypersensitivity reaction to abacavir and in HLAB*5701-positive patients [see Contraindications (4), Warnings and Precautions (5.1)]. All patients should be screened for the HLAB*5701 allele prior to initiating therapy with EPZICOM or reinitiation of therapy with EPZICOM, unless patients have a previously documented HLAB*5701 allele assessment. Discontinue EPZICOM immediately if a hypersensitivity reaction is suspected, regardless of HLA-B*5701 status and even when other diagnoses are possible [see Contraindications (4), Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].

Following a hypersensitivity reaction to EPZICOM, NEVER restart EPZICOM or any other abacavircontaining product because more severe symptoms, including death, can occur within hours. Similar severe reactions have also occurred rarely following the reintroduction of abacavir-containing products in patients who have no history of abacavir hypersensitivity [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].

Exacerbations of Hepatitis B

Severe acute exacerbations of hepatitis B have been reported in patients who are coinfected with hepatitis B virus (HBV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV1) and have discontinued lamivudine, which is a component of EPZICOM. Hepatic function should be monitored closely with both clinical and laboratory follow-up for at least several months in patients who discontinue EPZICOM and are co-infected with HIV1 and HBV. If appropriate, initiation of antihepatitis B therapy may be warranted [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)].

1 INDICATIONS AND USAGE

EPZICOM, in combination with other antiretroviral agents, is indicated for the treatment of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV‑1) infection.

2 DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION

2.1 Screening for HLA-B*5701 Allele prior to Starting EPZICOM

Screen for the HLA‑B*5701 allele prior to initiating therapy with EPZICOM [see Boxed Warning, Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].

2.2 Recommended Dosage for Adult Patients

The recommended dosage of EPZICOM for adults is one tablet taken orally once daily, in combination with other antiretroviral agents, with or without food.

2.3 Recommended Dosage for Pediatric Patients

The recommended oral dose of EPZICOM for pediatric patients weighing at least 25 kg is one tablet daily in combination with other antiretroviral agents [see Clinical Studies (14.2)]. Before prescribing EPZICOM tablets, pediatric patients should be assessed for the ability to swallow tablets.

2.4 Not Recommended Due to Lack of Dosage Adjustment

Because EPZICOM is a fixed‑dose tablet and cannot be dose adjusted, EPZICOM is not recommended for:

patients with creatinine clearance less than 30 mL per minute [see Use in Specific Populations (8.6)].
patients with mild hepatic impairment. EPZICOM is contraindicated in patients with moderate or severe hepatic impairment [see Contraindications (4), Use in Specific Populations (8.7)].

Use of EPIVIR (lamivudine) oral solution or tablets and ZIAGEN (abacavir) oral solution may be considered.

3 DOSAGE FORMS AND STRENGTHS

EPZICOM tablets contain 600 mg of abacavir as abacavir sulfate and 300 mg of lamivudine. The tablets are modified capsule-shaped, orange, film-coated, and debossed with “GS FC2” on one side with no markings on the reverse side.

4 CONTRAINDICATIONS

EPZICOM is contraindicated in patients:

who have the HLA‑B*5701 allele [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].
with prior hypersensitivity reaction to abacavir [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)] or lamivudine.
with moderate or severe hepatic impairment [see Use in Specific Populations (8.7)].

5 WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS

5.1 Hypersensitivity Reactions

Serious and sometimes fatal hypersensitivity reactions have occurred with abacavir, a component of EPZICOM. These hypersensitivity reactions have included multi-organ failure and anaphylaxis and typically occurred within the first 6 weeks of treatment with abacavir (median time to onset was 9 days); although abacavir hypersensitivity reactions have occurred any time during treatment [see Adverse Reactions (6.1)]. Patients who carry the HLA‑B*5701 allele are at a higher risk of abacavir hypersensitivity reactions; although, patients who do not carry the HLA‑B*5701 allele have developed hypersensitivity reactions. Hypersensitivity to abacavir was reported in approximately 206 (8%) of 2,670 patients in 9 clinical trials with abacavir-containing products where HLA‑B*5701 screening was not performed. The incidence of suspected abacavir hypersensitivity reactions in clinical trials was 1% when subjects carrying the HLA‑B*5701 allele were excluded. In any patient treated with abacavir, the clinical diagnosis of hypersensitivity reaction must remain the basis of clinical decision making.

Due to the potential for severe, serious, and possibly fatal hypersensitivity reactions with abacavir:

All patients should be screened for the HLA‑B*5701 allele prior to initiating therapy with EPZICOM or reinitiation of therapy with EPZICOM, unless patients have a previously documented HLA‑B*5701 allele assessment.
EPZICOM is contraindicated in patients with a prior hypersensitivity reaction to abacavir and in HLA‑B*5701-positive patients.
Before starting EPZICOM, review medical history for prior exposure to any abacavir-containing product. NEVER restart EPZICOM or any other abacavir‑containing product following a hypersensitivity reaction to abacavir, regardless of HLA‑B*5701 status.
To reduce the risk of a life‑threatening hypersensitivity reaction, regardless of HLA‑B*5701 status, discontinue EPZICOM immediately if a hypersensitivity reaction is suspected, even when other diagnoses are possible (e.g., acute onset respiratory diseases such as pneumonia, bronchitis, pharyngitis, or influenza; gastroenteritis; or reactions to other medications).
If a hypersensitivity reaction cannot be ruled out, do not restart EPZICOM or any other abacavir‑containing products because more severe symptoms, which may include life‑threatening hypotension and death, can occur within hours.
If a hypersensitivity reaction is ruled out, patients may restart EPZICOM. Rarely, patients who have stopped abacavir for reasons other than symptoms of hypersensitivity have also experienced life-threatening reactions within hours of reinitiating abacavir therapy. Therefore, reintroduction of EPZICOM or any other abacavir-containing product is recommended only if medical care can be readily accessed.
A Medication Guide and Warning Card that provide information about recognition of hypersensitivity reactions should be dispensed with each new prescription and refill.

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