Description and Brand Names

Drug information provided by: Micromedex

US Brand Name

  1. Kuvan

Descriptions


Sapropterin is used to lower phenylalanine levels in the blood of patients with phenylketonuria (PKU). High levels of phenylalanine (an amino acid) in the blood can cause severe brain damage, including severe mental retardation, seizures, tremors, or decreased learning ability. This medicine is usually given along with a special diet .

This medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription .

This product is available in the following dosage forms:

  • Tablet, Disintegrating
  • Powder for Solution

Before Using

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of sapropterin in children below 4 years of age. Safety and efficacy have not been established .

Geriatric

Appropriate studies on the relationship of age to the effects of sapropterin have not been performed in the geriatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established .

Pregnancy

Information about this sapropterin-oral-route
Pregnancy Category Explanation
All Trimesters C Animal studies have shown an adverse effect and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR no animal studies have been conducted and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women.

Breastfeeding

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Drug Interactions

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your healthcare professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.

Other Interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Eating disorder (e.g., anorexia [loss of appetite]) or
  • Malnutrition—Proper diet is important while taking this medicine .
  • Fever or any illness—May increase phenylalanine levels in your blood. Your doctor may need to change your dose of this medicine .
  • Kidney problems—Use with caution. This medicine has not been tested in patients with this condition .
  • Liver problems—Use with caution. This medicine may make this condition worse .

Proper Use

It is best to take this medicine with food at the same time each day .

Mix the tablets in 4 to 8 ounces (1/2 to 1 cup) of water or apple juice before taking. It may take a few minutes for the tablets to dissolve. To make the tablets dissolve faster, you may stir or crush them. Drink this mixture within 15 minutes .

Carefully follow your doctor's instructions about any special diet. It is important that you maintain a diet with restricted amounts of phenylalanine .

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage form (tablets):
    • Adults and children 4 years of age and older—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The usual starting dose is 10 milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight per day. Your doctor may adjust your dose if needed.
    • Children below 4 years of age—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor .

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Precautions

It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure this medicine is working properly. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects .

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements .

Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common

  1. Fever

Incidence not determined

  1. Seizures

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common

  1. Cough
  2. diarrhea
  3. headache
  4. runny nose
  5. vomiting

Less common

  1. Bruising
  2. stuffy nose

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.