Qsymia

Drug List

Qsymia

Drug Name

Qsymia (Phentermine hydrochloride and topiramate)

Manufactured By

Vivus, Inc.

Drug Savings

Nationwide Prescription Connection (NPC) is an experienced advocacy service that helps connect patients to manufacturer provided free and discount programs. We can help the uninsured, under insured, those in the Medicare gap also known as the "doughnut hole", or even those needing help with expensive co-pays.  Our web site makes it easy for you to enter the medications you are taking, along with some basic patient information, and then finds the program that is right for you.

Nationwide Prescription Connection (NPC) is an experienced advocacy service that helps connect patients to manufacturer provided free and discount programs. We can help the uninsured, under insured, those in the Medicare gap also known as the "doughnut hole", or even those needing help with expensive co-pays.  Our web site makes it easy for you to enter the medications you are taking, along with some basic patient information, and then finds the program that is right for you.

Class

Treats Disease/Condition

Uses

This medication is used with a doctor-approved exercise, behavior change, and reduced-calorie diet program to help you lose weight. It is used by certain overweight people, such as those who are obese or have weight-related medical problems. Losing weight and keeping it off can lessen the many health risks that come with obesity, including heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and a shorter life. It is not known how this medication helps people to lose weight. It may work by decreasing your appetite, by increasing the amount of energy used by your body, or by affecting certain parts of the brain. This medication is a combination of phentermine and topiramate. Phentermine is an appetite suppressant and belongs to a class of drugs called sympathomimetic amines. Topiramate is known as an anticonvulsant or antiepileptic drug.

How To Use

Because of the risk to an unborn baby, only doctors and pharmacies trained in a special distribution program (Qsymia REMS) should prescribe or dispense this medication. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for details. Read the Medication Guide provided by your pharmacist before you start taking this medication and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist. Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually once daily in the morning. Taking this medication late in the day may cause trouble sleeping (insomnia). Swallow the capsules whole. Do not crush or chew the capsules. Doing so can release all of the drug at once, increasing the risk of side effects. The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. To reduce your risk of side effects, your doctor may direct you to start this medication at a low dose and gradually increase your dose. Follow your doctor's instructions carefully. To prevent kidney stones from forming, drink plenty of liquids while taking this medication unless your doctor instructs you otherwise. When this medication is used for several weeks, it may not work as well. Talk with your doctor if this medication stops working well. Your doctor may direct you to stop taking this medication.

Side Effects

Dizziness, drowsiness, dry mouth, difficulty sleeping, tiredness, tingling of the hands/feet, constipation, and metallic taste may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: temporary difficulty concentrating/finding words/remembering things, signs of kidney stones (such as painful urination, fever, chills, pink/bloody urine), rapid breathing, fast/slow/irregular heartbeat, bone pain/broken bones, loss of consciousness, change in sexual ability/interest, unusual bleeding/bruising. A small number of people who take anticonvulsants for any reason (such as seizure, bipolar disorder, pain) may experience depression, suicidal thoughts/attempts, or other mental/mood problems. Tell your doctor right away if you or your family/caregiver notice any unusual/sudden changes in your mood, thoughts, or behavior including signs of depression, suicidal thoughts/attempts, thoughts about harming yourself. Rarely, topiramate may cause a very serious eye problem, generally within 1 month of starting treatment. If untreated, this eye problem can lead to permanent blindness. Therefore, get medical help right away if any of these side effects occur: sudden vision changes (such as decreased vision, blurred vision), eye pain/redness. This medication can rarely cause a serious metabolic problem (high amount of ammonia in the blood), especially if you are also taking valproic acid. Tell your doctor right away if you experience sudden/unexplained tiredness, vomiting, or mental changes (such as decreased alertness). Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: severe headache, slurred speech, seizure, weakness on one side of the body. This drug may rarely cause serious (sometimes fatal) lung or heart problems (pulmonary hypertension, heart valve problems). The risk increases with longer use of this medication and use of other appetite-suppressant drugs/herbal products along with this drug. If you notice any of the following unlikely but very serious side effects, stop taking this medication and consult your doctor or pharmacist right away: chest pain, difficulty breathing with exercise/decreased ability to exercise, fainting, swelling of the legs/ankles/feet. A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing. This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

Drug Interactions

Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval. Taking MAO inhibitors with this medication may cause a serious (possibly fatal) drug interaction. Avoid taking MAO inhibitors (isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue, moclobemide, phenelzine, procarbazine, rasagiline, selegiline, tranylcypromine) during treatment with this medication. Most MAO inhibitors should also not be taken for two weeks before treatment with this medication. Ask your doctor when to start or stop taking this medication. Some products that may interact with this drug include: other stimulants (including amphetamines, methylphenidate, street drugs such as cocaine or MDMA/"ecstasy"). Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking other products that cause drowsiness including alcohol, antihistamines (such as cetirizine, diphenhydramine), drugs for sleep or anxiety (such as alprazolam, diazepam, zolpidem), muscle relaxants, and narcotic pain relievers (such as codeine). Check the labels on all your medicines (including allergy or cough-and-cold products containing decongestants such as pseudoephedrine, diet aids such as phenylpropanolamine, ephedra/ma huang) because they may contain ingredients that could increase your heart rate or blood pressure. Ask your pharmacist about using those products safely. If you are taking or have taken other appetite-suppressant drugs in the past year (such as diethylpropion, ephedra/ma huang), tell your doctor or pharmacist before starting this medication. If you are taking hormonal birth control (such as pills, patch, or ring) with this medication, tell your doctor if you have any new spotting or breakthrough bleeding. Caffeine can increase the side effects of this medication. Avoid drinking large amounts of beverages containing caffeine (coffee, tea, colas), eating large amounts of chocolate, or taking nonprescription products that contain caffeine. This medication may interfere with certain medical/laboratory tests (including brain scan for Parkinson's disease), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.

In Case of Overdose

Symptoms of overdose may include: rapid breathing, unusual restlessness, fast/slow/irregular heartbeat, chest pain, hallucinations, seizures, loss of consciousness, severe drowsiness. If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222.

In Case of Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.

Storage

Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets.