Saphris (Asenapine)

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What is Saphris (Asenapine) prescribed for?

Disorders like Schizophrenia is a chronic and severe mental disorder that affects the way a person thinks, acts, expresses emotions perceives reality, and relates to others. And while it is not a common mental disorder, it can be the most chronic and disabling. Symptoms can be distorted thoughts, hallucinations, and feelings of fright and paranoia.

Bipolar disorder is on the other hand, is a very serious and can cause risky behavior in an individual. It causes the person to have extreme mood swings from depression to mania. And it overall can have effects on high and low moods changes, sleep, energy, thinking and behavior.

This medication is used to treat mental and mood disorders such as Schizophrenia and Bipolar disorder.  When taken, this medication helps you think more clearly, feel less nervous, and helps you take part in everyday life. It may also decrease hallucinations and prevent severe mood swings.

Asenapine is a psychiatric medication that belongs to the class of drugs called atypical antipsychotics. And it generally works by restoring the balance of a natural substance in your brain called a neurotransmitter.

This medication is usually taken twice a day. Make sure you gently remove the medication for the packaging with dry hands by peeling back the tab. Do not push the tablet through the packaging. When done, play the dose under your tongue and allow it to dissolve completely into your saliva. Do not crush, chew, split, or swallow the tablet whole. And make sure not to eat anything for 10 minutes after taking this medication.

Remember the dosage is based on your medical condition, response to treatment, and other medications you may be taking at the time. Be sure to inform you doctor of any other drugs you may be using including prescription drugs, non prescription drugs, and any herbal products.

While it may take several weeks for you to begin to feel the full effect of this medication, you should always take it regularly. It’s always very important to continue taking this medication, even if you are feeling better.

Before taking this medication, it is best to advise your doctor if you are allergic Asenapine; or to any other medications or allergies in general. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems.

It is best to inform your doctor of your medical history. Therefore, it is best to speak with your doctor if you have ever suffered from any of the following; liver problems, heart problems (such as past heart attack, angina, abnormal heart rhythm), stroke, diabetes (including family history), obesity, low blood pressure, seizures, low white blood cell count, loss of too much body water (dehydration), breast cancer, substance use disorder (such as overuse of or addiction to drugs/alcohol), Alzheimer's disease, dementia, trouble swallowing, breathing trouble during sleep (sleep apnea).

Asenapine may cause a condition that affects the heart rhythm (QT prolongation). QT prolongation can rarely cause serious (rarely fatal) fast/irregular heartbeat and other symptoms (such as severe dizziness, fainting) that need medical attention right away.

The risk of QT prolongation may be increased if you have certain medical conditions or are taking other drugs that may cause QT prolongation. Before using asenapine, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the drugs you take and if you have any of the following conditions: certain heart problems (heart failure, slow heartbeat, QT prolongation in the EKG), family history of certain heart problems (QT prolongation in the EKG, sudden cardiac death).

Low levels of potassium or magnesium in the blood may also increase your risk of QT prolongation. This risk may increase if you use certain drugs (such as diuretics/"water pills") or if you have conditions such as severe sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting. Talk to your doctor about using asenapine safely.

While minor, some of these side effects may occur. They are as follows; Drowsiness, dizziness, lightheadedness, and weight gain may occur. Numbness/tingling of the mouth may also occur but usually goes away within 1 hour. Sores, blisters, or pain under the tongue may rarely occur. However if any of these persist or worsen, it’s best to speak with your doctor right away.

This drug may cause muscle/nervous system problems (extrapyramidal symptoms-EPS). Your doctor may prescribe another medication to decrease these side effects. Tell your doctor right away if you notice any of the following side effects: feelings of anxiety/agitation/jitteriness, drooling/trouble swallowing, restlessness/constant need to move, shaking (tremor), shuffling walk, stiff muscles, severe muscle spasms/cramping (such as twisting neck, arching back, eyes rolling up), mask-like expression of the face.

Infrequently, this medication may cause face/muscle twitching and uncontrollable movements (tardive dyskinesia). In some cases, this condition may be permanent. Tell your doctor right away if you develop any uncontrollable movements such as lip smacking, mouth puckering, tongue thrusting, chewing, or unusual arm/leg movements.

This drug may rarely make your blood sugar rise, which can cause or worsen diabetes. Weight gain from this drug may increase the risk of this side effect. Tell your doctor right away if you have symptoms of high blood sugar such as increased thirst/urination. If you already have diabetes, check your blood sugar regularly as directed and share the results with your doctor. Your doctor may need to adjust your diabetes medication, exercise program, or diet.

In rare cases, asenapine may increase your level of a certain substance made by the body (prolactin). For females, this increase in prolactin may result in unwanted breast milk, missed/stopped periods, or difficulty becoming pregnant. For males, it may result in decreased sexual ability, inability to produce sperm, or enlarged breasts. If you develop any of these symptoms, tell your doctor right away.

Rarely, with similar drugs, males may have a painful or prolonged erection lasting 4 or more hours. If this occurs, stop using this drug and get medical help right away, or permanent problems could occur.

Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: interrupted breathing during sleep (sleep apnea), signs of infection (such as fever, persistent sore throat).

Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: severe dizziness, fainting, slow heartbeat, seizures.

This medication may rarely cause a very serious condition called neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS). Get medical help right away if you have any of the following symptoms: fever, muscle stiffness/pain/tenderness/weakness, severe tiredness, severe confusion, sweating, fast/irregular heartbeat, dark urine, signs of kidney problems (such as change in the amount of urine).

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

What is Saphris?

This medication is used to treat some mental and mood disorders such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. It generally works by restoring the balance of a natural substance in the brain called a neurotransmitter. This medication comes in two different strengths which are 5mg, and 10mg. If you have any questions regarding this medication or any inquiries in general, feel free to give us a call at our toll free number 1-877-385-8998.     

 

What are the side effects of Saphris?

Some of the more common side effects to this medication are as follows; Drowsiness, dizziness, numbness or a tingling of the mouth, restlessness, constipation, dry mouth, insomnia, upset stomach, and weight gain. Keep in mind that these are not all of the side effects listed for this medication, and if you are experiencing any of these be sure to inform your doctor if they persist or worsen.

 

How long does Saphris stay in your system?

Saphris has an approximate elimination half-life of roughly 24 hours. Meaning it could take a couple of days before this medication is fully out of your system.   

 

How long does it take for Saphris to work?

You should see signs of improvement by day two. However, it may take up to three weeks before you may being to feel the full effect of this medication.

 

How to take Saphris?

Usually this medication is taken twice a day. With dry hands you may gently remove the tablet from the blister pack and then place it under your tongue, allowing it to dissolve. Be sure not to chew, crush, split or swallow the tablet whole. After it has fully dissolved do not eat or drink anything for 10 minutes.

 

How much does Saphris cost?

Saphris falls in line with Medicare’s Tier 4 of their formulary. And anything that falls in line with being a Tier 4 medication is usually referred to as a “non-preferred brand-name drug”. Being on Tier 4 also means it will be quite expensive. However, you can find a more affordable option on an online Canadian Pharmacy such as My Drug Center. We have a starting price of $60.00 for 50 tablets.

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