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The administration of buspirone hydrochloride tablets to a patient taking a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) may pose a hazard. There have been reports of the occurrence of elevated blood pressure when buspirone hydrochloride tablets have been added to a regimen including an MAOI. Therefore, it is recommended that buspirone hydrochloride tablets not be used concomitantly with an MAOI.
Because buspirone hydrochloride tablets have no established antipsychotic activity, it should not be employed in lieu of appropriate antipsychotic treatment.
Interference With Cognitive And Motor Performance
Studies indicate that buspirone hydrochloride tablets are less sedating than other anxiolytics and that it does not produce significant functional impairment. However, its CNS effects in any individual patient may not be predictable. Therefore, patients should be cautioned about operating an automobile or using complex machinery until they are reasonably certain that buspirone treatment does not affect them adversely.
While formal studies of the interaction of buspirone hydrochloride with alcohol indicate that buspirone does not increase alcohol-induced impairment in motor and mental performance, it is prudent to avoid concomitant use of alcohol and buspirone.
Potential For Withdrawal Reactions In Sedative/Hypnotic/Anxiolytic Drug-Dependent Patients
Because buspirone hydrochloride tablets do not exhibit cross-tolerance with benzodiazepines and other common sedative/hypnotic drugs, it will not block the withdrawal syndrome often seen with cessation of therapy with these drugs. Therefore, before starting therapy with buspirone hydrochloride tablets, it is advisable to withdraw patients gradually, especially patients who have been using a CNS-depressant drug chronically, from their prior treatment. Rebound or withdrawal symptoms may occur over varying time periods, depending in part on the type of drug, and its effective half-life of elimination.
The syndrome of withdrawal from sedative/hypnotic/anxiolytic drugs can appear as any combination of irritability, anxiety, agitation, insomnia, tremor, abdominal cramps, muscle cramps, vomiting, sweating, flu-like symptoms without fever, and occasionally, even as seizures.
Possible Concerns Related To Buspirone’s Binding To Dopamine Receptors
Because buspirone can bind to central dopamine receptors, a question has been raised about its potential to cause acute and chronic changes in dopamine-mediated neurological function (e.g., dystonia, pseudoparkinsonism, akathisia, and tardive dyskinesia). Clinical experience in controlled trials has failed to identify any significant neuroleptic-like activity; however, a syndrome of restlessness, appearing shortly after initiation of treatment, has been reported in some small fraction of buspirone-treated patients. The syndrome may be explained in several ways. For example, buspirone may increase central noradrenergic activity; alternatively, the effect may be attributable to dopaminergic effects (i.e., represent akathisia). See ADVERSE REACTIONS: Postmarketing Experience.
Information For Patients
To assure safe and effective use of buspirone hydrochloride tablets, the following information and instructions should be given to patients:
Inform your physician about any medications, prescription or non-prescription, alcohol, or drugs that you are now taking or plan to take during your treatment with buspirone hydrochloride tablets.
Inform your physician if you are pregnant, or if you are planning to become pregnant, or if you become pregnant while you are taking buspirone hydrochloride tablets.
Inform your physician if you are breastfeeding an infant.
Until you experience how this medication affects you, do not drive a car or operate potentially dangerous machinery.
You should take buspirone hydrochloride consistently, either always with or always without food.
During your treatment with buspirone hydrochloride tablets, avoid drinking large amounts of grapefruit juice.
There are no specific laboratory tests recommended.
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment Of Fertility
No evidence of carcinogenic potential was observed in rats during a 24 month study at approximately 133 times the maximum recommended human oral dose; or in mice, during an 18 month study at approximately 167 times the maximum recommended human oral dose.
With or without metabolic activation, buspirone did not induce point mutations in five strains of Salmonella typhimurium (Ames Test) or mouse lymphoma L5178YTK+ cell cultures, nor was DNA damage observed with buspirone in Wi-38 human cells. Chromosomal aberrations or abnormalities did not occur in bone marrow cells of mice given one or five daily doses of buspirone.
Pregnancy Category B
No fertility impairment or fetal damage was observed in reproduction studies performed in rats and rabbits at buspirone doses of approximately 30 times the maximum recommended human dose. In humans, however, adequate and well-controlled studies during pregnancy have not been performed. Because animal reproduction studies are not always predictive of human response, this drug should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed.
Labor And Delivery
The effect of buspirone hydrochloride on labor and delivery in women is unknown. No adverse effects were noted in reproduction studies in rats.
The extent of the excretion in human milk of buspirone or its metabolites is not known. In rats, however, buspirone and its metabolites are excreted in milk. Buspirone hydrochloride tablets administration to nursing women should be avoided if clinically possible.
The safety and effectiveness of buspirone were evaluated in two placebo-controlled 6 week trials involving a total of 559 pediatric patients (ranging from 6 to 17 years of age) with GAD. Doses studied were 7.5 mg to 30 mg b.i.d. (15 to 60 mg/day). There were no significant differences between buspirone and placebo with regard to the symptoms of GAD following doses recommended for the treatment of GAD in adults. Pharmacokinetic studies have shown that, for identical doses, plasma exposure to buspirone and its active metabolite, 1-PP, are equal to or higher in pediatric patients than adults. No unexpected safety findings were associated with buspirone in these trials. There are no longterm safety or efficacy data in this population.
In one study of 6632 patients who received buspirone for the treatment of anxiety, 605 patients were ≥ 65 years old and 41 were ≥ 75 years old; the safety and efficacy profiles for these 605 elderly patients (mean age =70.8 years) were similar to those in the younger population (mean age = 43.3 years). Review of spontaneously reported adverse clinical events has not identified differences between elderly and younger patients, but greater sensitivity of some older patients cannot be ruled out.
There were no effects of age on the pharmacokinetics of buspirone (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY, Special Populations).
Use In Patients With Impaired Hepatic Or Renal Function
Buspirone is metabolized by the liver and excreted by the kidneys. A pharmacokinetic study in patients with impaired hepatic or renal function demonstrated increased plasma levels and a lengthened half-life of buspirone. Therefore, the administration of buspirone hydrochloride tablets to patients with severe hepatic or renal impairment cannot be recommended (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY).This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
Last reviewed on RxList: 3/10/2017
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