(BPT) - This article is sponsored by Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc. and Lundbeck, for which Dr. Maguire is a paid consultant.
October is National Depression and Mental Health Screening Month, a time to reflect on the importance of recognizing the signs of depression and understanding when and how to seek professional help. It is intended to educate the public on the symptoms and statistics related to mental illnesses, as well as avenues for prevention through health screenings.
Depression is one of the most common mental illnesses in the United States; and for many patients with major depressive disorder (MDD), symptoms are still present, despite taking an antidepressant. This is sometimes called a “partial response,” which is when a patient shows some progress with their current treatment regimen, but still struggles with lingering symptoms of depression. Nearly two-thirds of patients taking an antidepressant may experience a partial response.
“If patients are continuing to experience depressive symptoms on an antidepressant, I strongly encourage them to speak with their health care team,” says Dr. Gerald Maguire, Chief of Psychiatry at Doc1 Health. “There must be an open dialogue between patients with depression and providers in order to adjust dosages, switch medications, or include add-on therapies, as needed.”
Treatment for depression is specific to each patient. It looks different for everyone and may include psychotherapy, medications such as antidepressants, add-on therapies or a combination of these approaches over a period of time, as decided by a patient and their health care team.
REXULTI® (brexpiprazole) is a prescription medicine used to treat major depressive disorder in adults. REXULTI is used with antidepressant medicines, when their healthcare provider determines that an antidepressant alone is not enough to treat their depression. For adult patients taking an antidepressant for at least two months, but aren’t seeing the progress they hoped for, adding REXULTI to their current treatment regimen may help reduce their depression symptoms – without giving up the progress they’ve already made with their current antidepressant.
REXULTI may cause serious side effects, including an increased risk of death in elderly people with dementia-related psychosis and risk of suicidal thoughts or actions. Please read the IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION below.
“National Depression and Mental Health Screening Month serves as a great reminder to patients and providers alike that frequent and open communication is a vital aspect of any care plan,” says Dr. Maguire. “For patients suffering from depression, specifically those who may be taking an antidepressant and are still experiencing symptoms of depression, it is important that they know they are not alone and that adjustments to medications may provide improved symptom relief.”
Dr. Maguire also advises patients to engage their health care team if they have any concerns or notice any changes in their mental health.
INDICATION and IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION forREXULTI® ( brexpiprazole)
REXULTI is a prescription medicine used to treat:
It is not known if REXULTI is safe and effective in people under 18 years of age.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION:
Increased risk of death in elderly people with dementia-related psychosis. Medicines like REXULTI can raise the risk of death in elderly who have lost touch with reality (psychosis) due to confusion and memory loss (dementia). REXULTI is not approved for the treatment of patients with dementia-related psychosis.
Antidepressant medicines may increase suicidal thoughts or actions in some children, teenagers, or young adults within the first few months of treatment. Depression and other serious mental illnesses are the most important causes of suicidal thoughts or actions. Some people may have a particularly high risk of having suicidal thoughts or actions. Patients on antidepressants and their families or caregivers should watch for new or worsening depression symptoms, 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. Report any changes in these symptoms immediately to the doctor. REXULTI is not approved for the treatment of people younger than 18 years of age.
Do not take REXULTI if you are allergic to brexpiprazole or any of the ingredients in REXULTI. Allergic reactions have included rash, facial swelling, hives and itching, and anaphylaxis, which may include difficulty breathing, tightness in the chest, and swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue.
REXULTI may cause serious side effects, including:
Do not drive a car, operate machinery, or do other dangerous activities until you know how REXULTI affects you. REXULTI may make you feel drowsy.
Before taking REXULTI, tell your healthcare provider if you:
Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take or recently have taken, including prescription medicines, over-the-counter medicines, vitamins and herbal supplements.
REXULTI and other medicines may affect each other causing possible serious side effects. REXULTI may affect the way other medicines work, and other medicines may affect how REXULTI works.
Your healthcare provider can tell you if it is safe to take REXULTI with your other medicines. Do not start or stop any medicines while taking REXULTI without talking to your healthcare provider first.
The most common side effects of REXULTI include weight gain and an inner sense of restlessness such as feeling like you need to move.
Tell your healthcare provider if you experience abnormal muscle spasms or contractions, which may be a sign of a condition called dystonia.
These are not all the possible side effects of REXULTI. For more information, ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist. Call your doctor for medical advice about your health or medicines, including side effects.
You are encouraged to report side effects of REXULTI (brexpiprazole). Please contact Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc. at 1-800-438-9927 or FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (www.fda.gov/medwatch).
Learn more at www.rexulti.com.