Seroquel (Quetiapine Fumarate) Patient Information

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Find out why Seroquel is prescribed, side effects of Seroquel, Seroquel warnings, effects of Seroquel during pregnancy, more - in plain English.

Seroquel (Quietiapine Fumarate) Medication Guide and Patient Couseling Information

Full Seroquel prescribing information

Medication Guide

Antidepressant Medicines, Depression and other Serious Mental Illnesses, and Suicidal Thoughts or Actions

Read the Medication Guide that comes with you or your family member's antidepressant medicine. This Medication Guide is only about the risk of suicidal thoughts and actions with antidepressant medicines. Talk to your, or your family member's, healthcare provider about:

  • all risks and benefits of treatment with antidepressant medicines
  • all treatment choices for depression or other serious mental illness

What is the most important information I should know about antidepressant medicines, depression and other serious mental illnesses, and suicidal thoughts or actions?

  1. Antidepressant medicines may increase suicidal thoughts or actions in some children, teenagers, and young adults within the first few months of treatment.
  2. Depression and other serious mental illnesses are the most important causes of suicidal thoughts and actions. Some people may have a particularly high risk of having suicidal thoughts or actions. These include people who have (or have a family history of) bipolar illness (also called manic-depressive illness) or suicidal thoughts or actions.
  3. How can I watch for and try to prevent suicidal thoughts and actions in myself or a family member?
    • Pay close attention to any changes, especially sudden changes, in mood, behaviors, thoughts, or feelings. This is very important when an antidepressant medicine is started or when the dose is changed.
    • Call the healthcare provider right away to report new or sudden changes in mood, behavior, thoughts, or feelings.
    • Keep all follow-up visits with the healthcare provider as scheduled. Call the healthcare provider between visits as needed, especially if you have concerns about symptoms.

Call a healthcare provider right away if you or your family member has any of the following symptoms, especially if they are new, worse, or worry you:

  • thoughts about suicide or dying
  • attempts to commit suicide
  • new or worse depression
  • new or worse anxiety
  • feeling very agitated or restless
  • panic attacks
  • trouble sleeping (insomnia)
  • new or worse irritability
  • acting aggressive, being angry, or violent
  • acting on dangerous impulses
  • an extreme increase in activity and talking (mania)
  • other unusual changes in behavior or mood

What else do I need to know about antidepressant medicines?

  • Never stop an antidepressant medicine without first talking to a healthcare provider. Stopping an antidepressant medicine suddenly can cause other symptoms.
  • Antidepressants are medicines used to treat depression and other illnesses. It is important to discuss all the risks of treating depression and also the risks of not treating it. Patients and their families or other caregivers should discuss all treatment choices with the healthcare provider, not just the use of antidepressants.
  • Antidepressant medicines have other side effects. Talk to the healthcare provider about the side effects of the medicine prescribed for you or your family member.
  • Antidepressant medicines can interact with other medicines. Know all of the medicines that you or your family member takes. Keep a list of all medicines to show the healthcare provider. Do not start new medicines without first checking with your healthcare provider.
  • Not all antidepressant medicines prescribed for children are FDA approved for use in children. Talk to your child's healthcare provider for more information.

This Medication Guide has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for all antidepressants.

Patient Counseling Information

[see Medication Guide]

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Prescribers or other health professionals should inform patients, their families, and their caregivers about the benefits and risks associated with treatment with SEROQUEL and should counsel them in its appropriate use. A patient Medication Guide about "Antidepressant Medicines, Depression and other Serious Mental Illness, and Suicidal Thoughts or Actions" is available for SEROQUEL. The prescriber or health professional should instruct patients, their families, and their caregivers to read the Medication Guide and should assist them in understanding its contents. Patients should be given the opportunityto discuss the contents of the Medication Guide and to obtain answers to any questions they may have. The complete text of the Medication Guide is reprinted at the end of this Patients should be advised of the following issues and asked to alert their prescriber if these occur while taking SEROQUEL.

Clinical Worsening and Suicide Risk

Patients, their families, and their caregivers should be encouraged to be alert to the emergence of anxiety, agitation, panic attacks, insomnia, irritability, hostility, aggres-siveness, impulsivity, akathisia (psychomotor restlessness), hypomania, mania, other unusual changes in behavior, worsening of depression, and suicidal ideation, especially early during antidepressant treatment and when the dose is adjusted up or down. Families and caregivers of patients should be advised to look for the emergence of such symptoms on a day-to-day basis, since changes may be abrupt. Such symptoms should be reported to the patient's prescriber or health professional, especially if they are severe, abrupt in onset, or were not part of the patient's presenting symptoms. Symptoms such as these may be associated with an increased risk for suicidal thinking and behavior and indicate a need for very close monitoring and possibly changes in the medication.

Increased Mortality in Elderly Patients with Dementia-Related Psychosis

Patients and caregivers should be advised that elderly patients with dementia-related psychoses treated with atypical antipsychotic drugs are at increased risk of death compared with placebo. Quetiapine is not approved for elderly patients with dementia-related psychosis.

Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome (NMS)

Patients should be advised to report to their physician any signs or symptoms that may be related to NMS. These may include muscle stiffness and high fever.

Hyperglycemia and Diabetes Mellitus

Patients should be aware of the symptoms of hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) and diabetes mellitus. Patients who are diagnosed with diabetes, those with risk factors for diabetes, or those that develop these symptoms during treatment should be monitored.

Orthostatic Hypotension

Seroquel presentation

Patients should be advised of the risk of orthostatic hypotension (symptoms include feeling dizzy or lightheaded upon standing) especially during the period of initial dose titration, and also at times of re-initiating treatment or increases in dose.

Leukopenia/Neutropenia

Patients with a pre-existing low WBC or a history of drug induced leukopenia/neutropenia should be advised that they should have their CBC monitored while taking SEROQUEL [see Warnings and Precautions (5.6)].

Interference with Cognitive and Motor Performance

Patients should be advised of the risk of somnolence or sedation, especially during the period of initial dose titration. Patients should be cautioned about performing any activity requiring mental alertness, such as operating a motor vehicle (including automobiles) or operating machinery, until they are reasonably certain quetiapine therapy does not affect them adversely. Patients should limit consumption of alcohol during treatment with quetiapine.

Pregnancy and Nursing

Patients should be advised to notify their physician if they become pregnant or intend to become pregnant during therapy. Patients should be advised not to breast feed if they are taking quetiapine.

Concomitant Medication

As with other medications, patients should be advised to notify their physicians if they are taking, or plan to take, any prescription or over-the-counter drugs.

Heat Exposure and Dehydration

Patients should be advised regarding appropriate care in avoiding overheating and dehydration.

SEROQUEL is a registered trademark of the AstraZeneca group of companies
©AstraZeneca 2008
AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP
Wilmington, DE 19850
Made in USA
35018-01 07/08 266196

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last updated: June 2008

Full Seroquel prescribing information

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