Brexpiprazole

1 What is Brexpiprazole?

Brand: Rexulti

Generic: Brexpiprazole

Brexpiprazole, also known and sold under the trade name of Rexulti, is a psychiatric medication which belongs to the group of drugs known as atypical antipsychotics. 

This medication is used in the treatment of certain mood/mental disorders (e.g. schizophrenia and depression). It is considered to work by helping to restore the balance of certain natural substances in the brain. 

It helps to relieve the symptoms and improve your everyday life – think clearly, feel less nervous, decrease hallucinations, improve your sleep, appetite, mood and energy level. 

This medication is available in the form of a tablet.

2 What to Know Before Using

Before the decision to start the treatment with this medication is made, it is essential to get informed about the expected beneficial effects, as well as, about the potential side effects and risks. 

For this decision to be made, the beneficial effects must outweigh the potential risks. This is a decision that you and your doctor, together, will have to make. During the consultations, it is important to inform the doctor about:

  • Allergies – Inform the doctor about any allergic reactions to any kind of medications, prescribed or not prescribed. Also, inform the healthcare professional about any allergic reactions to any specific kind of food, dye, fabric and etc.
  • Pediatric – There are no studies done that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used within pediatric patients. This medication is not recommended to be used within pediatric patients. However, it could be used only in cases where the beneficial effects outweigh the potential risks.
  • Geriatric – Proper studies done have confirmed that there are no age-related problems and risks when this medication has been used within geriatric patients. However, because of the increased risk of heart and kidney problems within the elderly, this medication must be used with extra caution.
  • Pregnancy – Inform the doctor if you are currently pregnant or have any plans about pregnancy in the near future. There are no studies done that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used during pregnancy. It is unknown how would it affect the fetus. This medication is not recommended to be used during pregnancy. However, this medication could be used only in cases where the beneficial effects outweigh the potential risks. 
  • Breastfeeding – Inform the doctor if you are currently breastfeeding. There are no studies done that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used in nursing mothers. It is unknown if it is extracted in the milk, or how would it affect the infant. This medication is not recommended to be used in nursing mothers. However, it could be used only in cases where the beneficial effects outweigh the potential risks.
  • Drug interactions – Inform the doctor if you are currently using any other medications, prescribed or not prescribed, even vitamins and herbal tea. This is important because certain medications are not recommended to be used in a combination with others, due to the possibility that certain interactions could occur. However, sometimes the doctor may decide to use a specific type of combination, including two or more medications, to treat your condition, if he or she considers that combination to prove as beneficial regarding your condition. 
  • Other interactions – Certain medications are not recommended to be used in a combination with specific type of food, tobacco and alcohol. Because of this, it is important to get informed if there is a need for you to follow a specific type of diet, and discontinue your use of tobacco and/or alcohol during the treatment.
  • Other medical problems – Inform the doctor about your medical history, any other medical problems and conditions from the past or at the moment. Especially, inform the doctor if there are any of the following conditions – blood vessel disease, dehydration, heart attack or stroke, heart failure, heart rhythm problems, hypotension, hypovolemia, ischemic heart disease, trouble swallowing, diabetes, hyperglycemia, dyslipidemia, neuroleptic malignant syndrome, seizures, kidney disease, or liver disease
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3 Proper Usage

For proper use, follow the directions given by your doctor. This medication is available in the form of a tablet, for oral use. 

Swallow the tablet whole, with or without food, as directed by your doctor. Do not crush, break or chew the tablet. The dose is individual for every patient, prescribed by the doctor and based on your condition and the prognosis of the treatment. 

In order to get the most beneficial effects from it use, remember to take each dose regularly. If you forget a dose, take it as soon as possible. Do not double to catch up. This medication is harmful in case of an overdose. 

If an overdose is suspected, contact the doctor as soon as possible.

4 Precautions to Take

Visit your doctor regularly, at your scheduled appointments, so that he or she would be able to track your condition and make any adjustments if needed. 

These adjustments may refer to the dose – e.g. the doctor may decide to increase or decrease the dose, or to the treatment itself – the doctor may decide to discontinue the treatment if there are any serious side effects present, that would worsen your condition or if your condition does not improve. 

Inform the doctor about any allergic reactions to any kind of medications, prescribed or no prescribed. This is important because this medication may contain inactive substances that could cause certain interactions to occur. Inform the doctor if you are currently pregnant or have any plans about pregnancy in the near future. 

This medication is not recommended to be used during pregnancy, due to the lack of studies that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used during pregnancy. At least two proven forms of birth control should be used during the treatment to help prevent pregnancy. Inform the doctor if you are currently breastfeeding. 

This medication is not recommended to be used within nursing mothers, due to the lack of studies that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used within nursing mothers. This medication is not recommended to be used within children. 

This medication may cause dizziness or drowsiness to occur. Avoid driving and any other activities which require alertness during the treatment. This medication may decrease sweating. 

This increases the chances of heat stroke. Remember to drink plenty of fluids, wear light clothing and avoid any heavy activities during the treatment. 

5 Potential Side Effects

Along with the expected beneficial effects, there are potential side effects that could also occur. These side effects do not occur within all patients, also they could be mild or more serious. 

However, it is important to get informed about the potential side effects, so that you would be able to notice their presence and inform the doctor as soon as possible for further directions. 

Common side effects:

  • drowsiness
  • dizziness
  • shaking
  • increased appetite
  • weight gain and 
  • restlessness

These side effects are common, and are not considered as serious. However, if their presence worsens or persists, contact the doctor as soon as possible.

Serious side effects:

  • seizure. 

This is a serious side effect, whose presence must be reported to the doctor as soon as possible.

A very serious allergic reaction to this medication is not common. However, if you notice any of the following symptoms, inform the doctor as soon as possible – skin rash, itching/swelling of the face/tongue/hands/feet, trouble breathing and severe dizziness

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