Paliperidone (Page 3 of 10)

5.7 Hyperprolactinemia

Like other drugs that antagonize dopamine D2 receptors, paliperidone elevates prolactin levels and the elevation persists during chronic administration. Paliperidone has a prolactin-elevating effect similar to that seen with risperidone, a drug that is associated with higher levels of prolactin than other antipsychotic drugs.

Hyperprolactinemia, regardless of etiology, may suppress hypothalamic GnRH, resulting in reduced pituitary gonadotrophin secretion. This, in turn, may inhibit reproductive function by impairing gonadal steroidogenesis in both female and male patients. Galactorrhea, amenorrhea, gynecomastia, and impotence have been reported in patients receiving prolactin-elevating compounds. Long-standing hyperprolactinemia when associated with hypogonadism may lead to decreased bone density in both female and male subjects.

Tissue culture experiments indicate that approximately one-third of human breast cancers are prolactin dependent in vitro , a factor of potential importance if the prescription of these drugs is considered in a patient with previously detected breast cancer. An increase in the incidence of pituitary gland, mammary gland, and pancreatic islet cell neoplasia (mammary adenocarcinomas, pituitary and pancreatic adenomas) was observed in the risperidone carcinogenicity studies conducted in mice and rats [see Nonclinical Toxicology (13.1)]. Neither clinical studies nor epidemiologic studies conducted to date have shown an association between chronic administration of this class of drugs and tumorigenesis in humans, but the available evidence is too limited to be conclusive.

5.8 Potential for Gastrointestinal Obstruction

Because paliperidone extended-release tablets are non-deformable and do not appreciably change in shape in the gastrointestinal tract, paliperidone extended-release tablets should ordinarily not be administered to patients with pre-existing severe gastrointestinal narrowing (pathologic or iatrogenic, for example: esophageal motility disorders, small bowel inflammatory disease, “short gut” syndrome due to adhesions or decreased transit time, past history of peritonitis, cystic fibrosis, chronic intestinal pseudo-obstruction, or Meckel’s diverticulum). There have been rare reports of obstructive symptoms in patients with known strictures in association with the ingestion of drugs in non-deformable controlled-release formulations. Because of the controlled-release design of the tablet, paliperidone extended-release tablets should only be used in patients who are able to swallow the tablet whole [see Dosage and Administration (2.3) and Patient Counseling Information (17)].

A decrease in transit time, e.g., as seen with diarrhea, would be expected to decrease bioavailability and an increase in transit time, e.g., as seen with gastrointestinal neuropathy, diabetic gastroparesis, or other causes, would be expected to increase bioavailability. These changes in bioavailability are more likely when the changes in transit time occur in the upper GI tract.

5.9 Orthostatic Hypotension and Syncope

Paliperidone can induce orthostatic hypotension and syncope in some patients because of its alpha-blocking activity. In pooled results of the three placebo-controlled, 6-week, fixed-dose trials in subjects with schizophrenia, syncope was reported in 0.8% (7/850) of subjects treated with paliperidone extended-release tablets (3 mg, 6 mg, 9 mg, 12 mg) compared to 0.3% (1/355) of subjects treated with placebo.

Paliperidone extended-release tablets should be used with caution in patients with known cardiovascular disease (e.g., heart failure, history of myocardial infarction or ischemia, conduction abnormalities), cerebrovascular disease, or conditions that predispose the patient to hypotension (e.g., dehydration, hypovolemia, and treatment with antihypertensive medications). Monitoring of orthostatic vital signs should be considered in patients who are vulnerable to hypotension.

5.10 Falls

Somnolence, postural hypotension, motor and sensory instability have been reported with the use of antipsychotics, including paliperidone, which may lead to falls and, consequently, fractures or other fall-related injuries. For patients, particularly the elderly, with diseases, conditions, or medications that could exacerbate these effects, assess the risk of falls when initiating antipsychotic treatment and recurrently for patients on long-term antipsychotic therapy.

5.11 Leukopenia, Neutropenia, and Agranulocytosis

In clinical trial and/or postmarketing experience, events of leukopenia/neutropenia have been reported temporally related to antipsychotic agents, including paliperidone extended-release tablets. Agranulocytosis has also been reported.

Possible risk factors for leukopenia/neutropenia include pre-existing low white blood cell count (WBC)/absolute neutrophil count (ANC) and history of drug-induced leukopenia/neutropenia. In patients with a history of a clinically significant low WBC/ANC or a drug-induced leukopenia/neutropenia, perform a complete blood count (CBC) frequently during the first few months of therapy. In such patients, consider discontinuation of paliperidone extended-release tablets at the first sign of a clinically significant decline in WBC in the absence of other causative factors.

Monitor patients with clinically significant neutropenia for fever or other symptoms or signs of infection and treat promptly if such symptoms or signs occur. Discontinue paliperidone extended-release tabletsin patients with severe neutropenia (absolute neutrophil count < 1,000/mm3)and follow their WBC until recovery.

5.12 Potential for Cognitive and Motor Impairment

Somnolence, sedation, and dizziness were reported as adverse reactions in subjects treated with paliperidone extended-release tablets [see Adverse Reactions (6.2)]. Antipsychotics, including paliperidone extended-release tablets, have the potential to impair judgment, thinking, or motor skills. Patients should be cautioned about performing activities requiring mental alertness, such as operating hazardous machinery or operating a motor vehicle, until they are reasonably certain that paliperidone therapy does not adversely affect them.

5.13 Seizures

During premarketing clinical trials in subjects with schizophrenia (the three placebo-controlled, 6-week, fixed-dose studies and a study conducted in elderly schizophrenic subjects), seizures occurred in 0.22% of subjects treated with paliperidone extended-release tablets (3 mg, 6 mg, 9 mg, 12 mg) and 0.25% of subjects treated with placebo. Like other antipsychotic drugs, paliperidone extended-release tablets should be used cautiously in patients with a history of seizures or other conditions that potentially lower the seizure threshold. Conditions that lower the seizure threshold may be more prevalent in patients 65 years or older.

5.14 Dysphagia

Esophageal dysmotility and aspiration have been associated with antipsychotic drug use. Aspiration pneumonia is a common cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with advanced Alzheimer’s dementia. Paliperidone extended-release tablets and other antipsychotic drugs should be used cautiously in patients at risk for aspiration pneumonia.

5.15 Priapism

Drugs with alpha-adrenergic blocking effects have been reported to induce priapism. Priapism has been reported with paliperidone extended-release tablets during postmarketing surveillance. Severe priapism may require surgical intervention.

5.16 Body Temperature Regulation

Disruption of the body’s ability to reduce core body temperature has been attributed to antipsychotic agents. Appropriate care is advised when prescribing paliperidone extended-release tablets to patients who will be experiencing conditions which may contribute to an elevation in core body temperature, e.g., exercising strenuously, exposure to extreme heat, receiving concomitant medication with anticholinergic activity, or being subject to dehydration.


The following adverse reactions are discussed in more detail in other sections of the labeling:

  • Increased mortality in elderly patients with dementia-related psychosis [see Boxed Warning and Warnings and Precautions (5.1)]
  • Cerebrovascular adverse reactions, including stroke, in elderly patients with dementia-related psychosis [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)]
  • Neuroleptic malignant syndrome [see Warnings and Precautions (5.3)]
  • QT prolongation [see Warnings and Precautions (5.4)]
  • Tardive dyskinesia [see Warnings and Precautions (5.5)]
  • Metabolic changes [see Warnings and Precautions (5.6)]
  • Hyperprolactinemia [see Warnings and Precautions (5.7)]
  • Potential for gastrointestinal obstruction [see Warnings and Precautions (5.8)]
  • Orthostatic hypotension and syncope [see Warnings and Precautions (5.9)]
  • Falls [see Warnings and Precautions (5.10)]
  • Leukopenia, neutropenia, and agranulocytosis [see Warnings and Precautions (5.11)]
  • Potential for cognitive and motor impairment [see Warnings and Precautions (5.12)]
  • Seizures [see Warnings and Precautions (5.13)]
  • Dysphagia [see Warnings and Precautions (5.14)]
  • Priapism [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1 5 )]
  • Disruption of body temperature regulation [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1 7 )]

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