What is Aristada?

Aristada is a medication that is used to treat symptoms of schizophrenia. The medication comes in the form of extended release injection that is administered by a health care professional every 4 to 6 weeks.

When did the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approve the medication?

Aristada was first approved by the FDA to treat schizophrenia in 2015.


Is there a generic version of Aristada?

No, there are currently no generic versions of the drug available for use in the United States.


Are there any major differences between Aristada and other antipsychotics used to treat Aristada?

Aristada belongs to the class of medications known as atypical antipsychotics or second generation psychotics and it comes in injected extended release form. Medication by injection may prove more effective for those who struggle to remember to take a pill. Talk to your doctor about what might work best for you and the costs and benefits of taking the medication. Some people may need to try several different antipsychotics before they find the most effective with the fewest side effects.


Can children take Aristada?

The effectiveness and safety of the medication has not been tested in patients less than 18 years old. Talk to your child’s doctor about the risks of using the medication, which may include increased suicidal thoughts.


Are there potential interaction issues for people taking Aristada and any other drugs?

There are hundreds of drugs which are known to interact with Aristada in major, moderate, or mild ways, so let your doctor know what other medications you are taking before you begin taking the medication. Some of these include oral aripiprazole, carbamazepine, benzodiazepines, and antihypertensive drugs.


Are there any other medical conditions that would make someone ineligible for Aristada therapy?

Talk to your doctor about other medical conditions before you take Aristada, such as dementia, stroke, seizures, neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS), diabetes, tardive dyskinesia, seizures.


What is the typical dose that would be prescribed to someone taking Aristada?

The medication is administered in injections of 441 mg, 662 mg, or 882 mg, monthly or every six weeks.


What do I do if I miss a dose?

If you miss your Aristada injection, contact your health care professional to reschedule as soon as possible.


What common side effects can Aristada cause?

The common side effects of Aristada can include:

  • The urge to move constantly
  • Pain at injection site
  • Weight gain
  • Sleep problems
  • Headaches
  • Restlessness


It also is recommended that you wait to drive or operate machinery until you know how the medication affects you. It is also not recommend that people avoid alcohol and illegal drugs while on the medication, as they can worsen adverse effects. Report major side effects to your doctor immediately, which can include stroke, uncontrolled body movements, high blood sugar, decreased blood pressure, trouble controlling body temperature, or trouble swallowing. You can also report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or online.


What are the potential long-term effects of taking Aristada?

Your doctor should monitor for progression of potential long-term side effects, which can include tardive dyskinesia (TD). Atypical antipsychotics may also increase the risk of cardiovascular side effects, diabetes, low white blood cell count, weight gain, and high cholesterol.


Is it safe for a woman who is pregnant, about to become pregnant, or nursing to take Aristada?

Exposure to the drug during the third trimester of pregnancy can lead to withdrawal symptoms in the infant after birth. The drug can be transferred into human breast milk, but there is not sufficient data as to whether it can harm a nursing infant. Therefore, talk to your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are nursing before you take Aristada.


Can symptoms occur if Aristada is discontinued?

It’s important not to discontinue use of the drug if you feel better. Maintain contact with your doctor and seek medical attention if necessary when discontinuing the drug. Talk to your doctor about how to mitigate potential withdrawal symptoms.


What should I do if I overdose on Aristada?

An overdose of Aristada could be fatal, so seek immediately help or call the Poison Help Line at 1-800-222-1222 if you overdose. Overdose symptoms can include aggression, irregular heartbeat, rapid heartbeat, coma, confusion, convulsions, hypertension, hypotension, lethargy, loss of consciousness, and respiratory arrest.


Is Aristada habit-forming?
Aristada has no habit-forming potential, but it is not recommended that you discontinue use of the drug before talking with your doctor, as withdrawal symptoms can occur.


How much does Aristada cost?

According to goodrx.com, 1 syringe of Aristada 882 mg costs approximately $2,200.


Are there any disadvantages to Aristada?

The biggest disadvantages of Aristada are potential side effects and the potential long-term side effects, which can include tardive dyskinesia.



DISCLAIMER: The information contained herein should NOT be used as a substitute for the advice of an appropriately qualified and licensed physician or other health care provider.  This article mentions drugs that were FDA-approved and available at the time of publication and may not include all possible drug interactions or all FDA warnings or alerts. The author of this page explicitly does not endorse this drug or any specific treatment method. If you have health questions or concerns about interactions, please check with your physician or go to the FDA site for a comprehensive list of warnings.




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Last Updated: Nov 25, 2018