ZYPREXA VELOTAB 5 mg orodispersible tablets

ATC Code
N05AH03
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About this drug

Admission country
Manufacturer Eli Lilly Nederland B.V.
Narcotic drug No
Psychotropic No
Anatomical group Nervensystem
Therapeutic group Psycholeptika
Pharmacological group Antipsychotika
Chemical group Diazepine, oxazepine, thiazepine und oxepine
Substance Olanzapin

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All to know

Author

Eli Lilly Nederland B.V.

What is it?

Zyprexa Velotab is a medicine that contains the active substance olanzapine. It is available as yellow, round ?orodispersible? tablets (5, 10, 15 and 20 mg). Orodispersible tablets are tablets that dissolve in the mouth.

What is it used for?

Zyprexa Velotab is used to treat adults with schizophrenia. Schizophrenia is a mental illness that has a number of symptoms, including disorganised thinking and speech, hallucinations (hearing or seeing things that are not there), suspiciousness and delusions (mistaken beliefs). Zyprexa Velotab is also effective in maintaining improvement in patients who have responded to an initial course of treatment. Zyprexa Velotab is also used to treat moderate to severe manic episodes (extremely high mood) in adults. It can also be used to prevent the recurrence of these episodes (when symptoms come back) in adults with bipolar disorder (a mental illness causing alternating periods of high mood and depression) who have responded to an initial course of treatment.
The medicine can only be obtained with a prescription.

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How is it used?

The recommended starting dose of Zyprexa Velotab depends on the disease being treated: 10 mg per day is used in schizophrenia and in the prevention of manic episodes, and 15 mg per day in the treatment of manic episodes, unless it is used with other medicines, in which case the starting dose can be 10 mg per day. The dose is adjusted according to how well the patient responds to and tolerates the treatment. The usual dose range is between 5 and 20 mg per day. The orodispersible tablets are taken by being placed on the tongue, where they disintegrate quickly in the saliva, or by mixing them in water before swallowing. Patients over 65 years of age and patients who have problems with their liver or kidneys may need a lower starting dose of 5 mg per day.

How does it work?

The active substance in Zyprexa Velotab, olanzapine, is an antipsychotic medicine. It is known as an ?atypical? antipsychotic because it is different from the older antipsychotic medicines that have been available since the 1950s. Its exact mechanism of action is unknown, but it attaches to several different receptors on the surface of nerve cells in the brain. This disrupts signals transmitted between brain cells by ?neurotransmitters?, chemicals that allow nerve cells to communicate with each other. It is thought that olanzapine?s beneficial effect is due to it blocking receptors for the neurotransmitters 5-hydroxytrypamine (also called serotonin) and dopamine. Since these neurotransmitters are involved in schizophrenia and in bipolar disorder, olanzapine helps to normalise the activity of the brain, reducing the symptoms of these diseases.

How has it been studied?

Zyprexa Velotab contains the same active substance as another medicine called Zyprexa that has been authorised in the European Union (EU) since 1996. Because of this, the studies done with Zyprexa were used to support the use of Zyprexa Velotab. Three studies were also carried to show that, when taken by mouth, the two medicines produce equivalent levels of olanzapine in the blood.

What benefits has it shown during the studies?

Like Zyprexa, Zyprexa Velotab was more effective at improving symptoms than placebo (a dummy treatment). Zyprexa Velotab was as effective as the medicines that it was compared with for the treatment of adults with schizophrenia, the treatment of moderate to severe manic episodes in adults, and the prevention of recurrence in adults with bipolar disorder.

What is the risk associated?

The most common side effects with Zyprexa Velotab (seen in more than 1 patient in 10) are somnolence (sleepiness), weight gain, and raised levels of prolactin (a hormone). For the full list of all side effects reported with Zyprexa Velotab, see the Package Leaflet.
Zyprexa Velotab should not be used in people who may be hypersensitive (allergic) to olanzapine or any of the other ingredients. Zyprexa Velotab should not be used in patients at risk of narrow-angle glaucoma (raised pressure inside the eye).

Why has it been approved?

The Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) decided that Zyprexa Velotab?s benefits are greater than its risks, in adults, for the treatment of schizophrenia, including the maintenance of clinical improvement during continuation therapy in patients who have shown an initial treatment response, the treatment of moderate to severe manic episode and the prevention of recurrence in patients with bipolar disorder. The Committee recommended that Zyprexa Velotab be given marketing authorisation.

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