Pramipexole Dihydrochloride (Page 2 of 8)

5.3 Impulse Control/Compulsive Behaviors

Case reports and the results of cross-sectional studies suggest that patients can experience intense urges to gamble, increased sexual urges, intense urges to spend money, binge eating, and/or other intense urges, and the inability to control these urges while taking one or more of the medications, including pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release, that increase central dopaminergic tone. In some cases, although not all, these urges were reported to have stopped when the dose was reduced or the medication was discontinued. Because patients may not recognize these behaviors as abnormal, it is important for prescribers to specifically ask patients or their caregivers about the development of new or increased gambling urges, sexual urges, uncontrolled spending or other urges while being treated with pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release for Parkinson’s disease. Physicians should consider dose reduction or stopping the medication if a patient develops such urges while taking pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release.

A total of 1056 patients with Parkinson’s disease who participated in two pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release placebo-controlled studies of up to 33 weeks duration were specifically asked at each visit about the occurrence of these symptoms. A total of 14 of 387 (4%) treated with pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets, 12 of 388 (3%) treated with immediate-release pramipexole tablets, and 4 of 281 (1%) treated with placebo reported compulsive behaviors, including pathological gambling, hypersexuality, and/or compulsive buying.

5.4 Hallucinations and Psychotic-like Behavior

In placebo-controlled clinical trials in Parkinson’s disease, hallucinations (visual or auditory or mixed) were reported in 25 of 387 (6%) patients treated with pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets compared to 5 of 281 (2%) patients receiving placebo. Hallucinations led to discontinuation of treatment in 5 of 387 (1%) patients on pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets.

Age appears to increase the risk of hallucinations attributable to pramipexole. In placebo-controlled clinical trials in Parkinson’s disease, hallucinations were reported in 15 of 162 (9%)patients ≥ 65 years of age taking pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets compared to 10 of 225 (4%)patients <65 years of age taking pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets.

Postmarketing reports with dopamine agonists, including pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release, indicate that patients with Parkinson’s disease may experience new or worsening mental status and behavioral changes, which may be severe, including psychotic-like behavior during treatment with pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release or after starting or increasing the dose of pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release. Other drugs prescribed to improve the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease can have similar effects on thinking and behavior. This abnormal thinking and behavior can consist of one or more of a variety of manifestations including paranoid ideation, delusions, hallucinations, confusion, psychotic-like behavior, symptoms of mania (e.g., insomnia, psychomotor agitation), disorientation, aggressive behavior, agitation, and delirium.

Patients with a major psychotic disorder should ordinarily not be treated with dopamine agonists, including pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release, because of the risk of exacerbating the psychosis. In addition, certain medications used to treat psychosis may exacerbate the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease and may decrease the effectiveness of pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release [see Drug Interactions ( 7.1)].

5.5 Dyskinesia

Pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets may cause or exacerbate preexisting dyskinesia.

5.6 Postural Deformity

Postural deformities, including antecollis, camptocormia (Bent Spine Syndrome), and pleurothotonus (Pisa Syndrome), have been reported in patients after starting or increasing the dose of pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets. Postural deformity may occur several months after starting treatment or increasing the dose. Reducing the dose or discontinuing pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets has been reported to improve postural deformity in some patients, and should be considered if postural deformity occurs.

5.7 Renal Impairment

The elimination of pramipexole is dependent on renal function [see Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)]. Patients with mild renal impairment (a creatinine clearance above 50 mL/min) require no reduction in daily dose. Pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets have not been studied in patients with moderate to severe renal impairment (creatinine clearance <50 mL/min) or on hemodialysis [see Dosage and Administration (2.2), Use in Specific Populations (8.6), and Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

5.8 Rhabdomyolysis

In the clinical development program for immediate-release pramipexole tablets, a single case of rhabdomyolysis occurred in a 49 year old male with advanced Parkinson’s disease. The patient was hospitalized with an elevated CPK (10,631 IU/L). The symptoms resolved with discontinuation of the medication.

Advise patients to contact a physician if they experience any unexplained muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness, as these may be symptoms of rhabdomyolysis.

5.9 Retinal Pathology

Human Data

A two-year open-label, randomized, parallel-group safety study of retinal deterioration and vision compared immediate-release pramipexole tablets and immediate-release ropinirole. Two hundred thirty four Parkinson’s disease patients (115 on pramipexole, mean dose 3 mg/day and 119 on ropinirole, mean dose 9.5 mg/day) were evaluated using a panel of clinical ophthalmological assessments. Of 234 patients who were evaluable, 196 had been treated for two years and 29 were judged to have developed clinical abnormalities that were considered meaningful (19 patients in each treatment arm had received treatment for less than two years). There was no statistical difference in retinal deterioration between the treatment arms; however, the study was only capable of detecting a very large difference between treatments. In addition, because the study did not include an untreated comparison group (placebo treated), it is unknown whether the findings reported in patients treated with either drug are greater than the background rate in an aging population.

Animal Data

Pathologic changes (degeneration and loss of photoreceptor cells) were observed in the retina of albino rats in a 2 year carcinogenicity study. While retinal degeneration was not diagnosed in pigmented rats treated for 2 years, a thinning in the outer nuclear layer of the retina was slightly greater in rats given drug compared with controls. Evaluation of the retinas of albino mice, monkeys, and minipigs did not reveal similar changes. The potential significance of this effect for humans has not been established, but cannot be disregarded because disruption of a mechanism that is universally present in vertebrates (i.e., disk shedding) may be involved [see Nonclinical Toxicology (13.2)].

5.10 Events Reported with Dopaminergic Therapy

Although the events enumerated below may not have been reported with the use of pramipexole in its development program, they are associated with the use of other dopaminergic drugs. The expected incidence of these events, however, is so low that even if pramipexole caused these events at rates similar to those attributable to other dopaminergic therapies, it would be unlikely that even a single case would have occurred in a cohort of the size exposed to pramipexole in studies to date.

Hyperpyrexia and Confusion

Although not reported with pramipexole in the clinical development program, a symptom complex resembling the neuroleptic malignant syndrome (characterized by elevated temperature, muscular rigidity, altered consciousness, and autonomic instability), with no other obvious etiology, has been reported in association with rapid dose reduction, withdrawal of, or changes in dopaminergic therapy. If possible, avoid sudden discontinuation or rapid dose reduction in patients taking pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets. If the decision is made to discontinue pramipexole dihydrochloride extended-release tablets, the dose should be tapered to reduce the risk of hyperpyrexia and confusion [see Dosage and Administration ( 2.2) ].

Fibrotic Complications

Cases of retroperitoneal fibrosis, pulmonary infiltrates, pleural effusion, pleural thickening, pericarditis, and cardiac valvulopathy have been reported in patients treated with ergot-derived dopaminergic agents. While these complications may resolve when the drug is discontinued, complete resolution does not always occur.

Although these adverse events are believed to be related to the ergoline structure of these compounds, whether other, non-ergot derived dopamine agonists can cause them is unknown.

Cases of possible fibrotic complications, including peritoneal fibrosis, pleural fibrosis, and pulmonary fibrosis have been reported in the postmarketing experience with immediate-release pramipexole tablets. While the evidence is not sufficient to establish a causal relationship between pramipexole and these fibrotic complications, a contribution of pramipexole cannot be completely ruled out.

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