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Medications: Belsomra® – suvorexant

MEDICATIONS

Belsomra® – suvorexant (View the FDA label)

INDICATIONS AND USAGE

BELSOMRA is an orexin receptor antagonist indicated for the treatment of insomnia, characterized by difficulties with sleep onset and/or sleep maintenance (1).

DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION

  • Use the lowest dose effective for the patient (2.1).
  • Recommended dose is 10 mg, no more than once per night taken within 30 minutes of going to bed, with at least 7 hours remaining before the planned time of awakening. If the 10 mg dose is well tolerated but not effective, the dose can be increased, not to exceed 20 mg once daily (2.1, 2.2).
  • Time to effect may be delayed if taken with or soon after a meal (2.1).

——————— DOSAGE FORMS AND STRENGTHS ——————–­

Tablets, 5 mg, 10 mg, 15 mg, 20 mg (3).

ADVERSE REACTIONS

The most common adverse reaction (reported in 5% or more of patients treated with BELSOMRA and at least twice the placebo rate) with BELSOMRA was somnolence (6.1).

To report SUSPECTED ADVERSE REACTIONS, contact Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc., at 1-877- 888-4231 or FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or www.fda.gov/medwatch.

CONTRAINDICATIONS

BELSOMRA is contraindicated in patients with narcolepsy (4).

WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS

  • CNS Depressant Effects and Daytime Impairment: Risk of impaired alertness and motor coordination, including impaired driving; risk increases with dose; caution patients taking 20 mg against next-day driving and other activities requiring complete mental alertness (5.1).
  • Worsening of Depression/Suicidal Ideation: Worsening of depression or suicidal thinking may occur. Risk increases with dose. Immediately evaluate any new behavioral changes (5.2).
  • Complex Sleep Behaviors: Behaviors including sleepwalking, sleep driving, and engaging in other activities while not fully awake may occur. Discontinue immediately if a complex sleep behavior occurs (5.3).
  • Sleep Paralysis, Hypnagogic/Hypnopompic Hallucinations, and Cataplexy-like Symptoms: May occur with the use of BELSOMRA. Risk increases with dose (5.4).
  • Compromised Respiratory Function: Effect on respiratory function should be considered (5.5, 8.6).
  • Need to Evaluate for Co-morbid Diagnoses: Reevaluate if insomnia persists after 7 to 10 days of treatment (5.6).

DRUG INTERACTIONS:

  • CYP3A inhibitors: Recommended dose is 5 mg when used with moderate CYP3A inhibitors. Dose can be increased to 10 mg once per night if the 5 mg dose is not effective. Not recommended for use in patients taking strong CYP3A inhibitors (2.4, 7.2).
  • Strong CYP3A inducers: Efficacy may be reduced (7.2).
  • Digoxin: Monitor digoxin concentrations (7.3).

OVERDOSAGE

There is limited premarketing clinical experience with an overdosage of BELSOMRA. In clinical pharmacology studies, healthy subjects who were administered morning doses of up to 240 mg of suvorexant showed dose-dependent increases in the frequency and duration of somnolence. General symptomatic and supportive measures should be used, along with immediate gastric lavage where appropriate. Intravenous fluids should be administered as needed. As in all cases of drug overdose, vital signs should be monitored and general supportive measures employed. The value of dialysis in the treatment of overdosage has not been determined. As suvorexant is highly protein-bound, hemodialysis is not expected to contribute to elimination of suvorexant.

As with the management of all overdosage, the possibility of multiple drug ingestion should be considered. Consider contacting a poison control center for up-to-date information on the management of hypnotic drug product overdosage.

Uses

INDICATIONS AND USAGE

BELSOMRA is an orexin receptor antagonist indicated for the treatment of insomnia, characterized by difficulties with sleep onset and/or sleep maintenance (1).

DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION

  • Use the lowest dose effective for the patient (2.1).
  • Recommended dose is 10 mg, no more than once per night taken within 30 minutes of going to bed, with at least 7 hours remaining before the planned time of awakening. If the 10 mg dose is well tolerated but not effective, the dose can be increased, not to exceed 20 mg once daily (2.1, 2.2).
  • Time to effect may be delayed if taken with or soon after a meal (2.1).

——————— DOSAGE FORMS AND STRENGTHS ——————–­

Tablets, 5 mg, 10 mg, 15 mg, 20 mg (3).

Side Effects

ADVERSE REACTIONS

The most common adverse reaction (reported in 5% or more of patients treated with BELSOMRA and at least twice the placebo rate) with BELSOMRA was somnolence (6.1).

To report SUSPECTED ADVERSE REACTIONS, contact Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc., at 1-877- 888-4231 or FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or www.fda.gov/medwatch.

Precautions

CONTRAINDICATIONS

BELSOMRA is contraindicated in patients with narcolepsy (4).

WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS

  • CNS Depressant Effects and Daytime Impairment: Risk of impaired alertness and motor coordination, including impaired driving; risk increases with dose; caution patients taking 20 mg against next-day driving and other activities requiring complete mental alertness (5.1).
  • Worsening of Depression/Suicidal Ideation: Worsening of depression or suicidal thinking may occur. Risk increases with dose. Immediately evaluate any new behavioral changes (5.2).
  • Complex Sleep Behaviors: Behaviors including sleepwalking, sleep driving, and engaging in other activities while not fully awake may occur. Discontinue immediately if a complex sleep behavior occurs (5.3).
  • Sleep Paralysis, Hypnagogic/Hypnopompic Hallucinations, and Cataplexy-like Symptoms: May occur with the use of BELSOMRA. Risk increases with dose (5.4).
  • Compromised Respiratory Function: Effect on respiratory function should be considered (5.5, 8.6).
  • Need to Evaluate for Co-morbid Diagnoses: Reevaluate if insomnia persists after 7 to 10 days of treatment (5.6).
Interactions

DRUG INTERACTIONS:

  • CYP3A inhibitors: Recommended dose is 5 mg when used with moderate CYP3A inhibitors. Dose can be increased to 10 mg once per night if the 5 mg dose is not effective. Not recommended for use in patients taking strong CYP3A inhibitors (2.4, 7.2).
  • Strong CYP3A inducers: Efficacy may be reduced (7.2).
  • Digoxin: Monitor digoxin concentrations (7.3).
Overdose

OVERDOSAGE

There is limited premarketing clinical experience with an overdosage of BELSOMRA. In clinical pharmacology studies, healthy subjects who were administered morning doses of up to 240 mg of suvorexant showed dose-dependent increases in the frequency and duration of somnolence. General symptomatic and supportive measures should be used, along with immediate gastric lavage where appropriate. Intravenous fluids should be administered as needed. As in all cases of drug overdose, vital signs should be monitored and general supportive measures employed. The value of dialysis in the treatment of overdosage has not been determined. As suvorexant is highly protein-bound, hemodialysis is not expected to contribute to elimination of suvorexant.

As with the management of all overdosage, the possibility of multiple drug ingestion should be considered. Consider contacting a poison control center for up-to-date information on the management of hypnotic drug product overdosage.

Interpreting the GeneSight® Test:
Gene-Drug Interaction Chart

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