How VENTAVIS Helps Patients with PAH Symptoms (NYHA Class III/IV)
How does VENTAVIS help treat pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH)?
VENTAVIS is delivered right to the lungsthe site of the disease. VENTAVIS is an inhaled therapy that can help patients walk farther and increase their activity level. Patients were also less likely to have worsening of their PAH.1
In a study of 146 patients with New York Heart Association (NYHA) Class III or IV PAH (WHO Group 1), researchers compared 2 groups of patients for 12 weeks: 1 group received VENTAVIS inhaled 6 to 9 times per day, while the other group inhaled placebo (no active medicine). About 5 times as many patients taking VENTAVIS had clinical improvement compared to those who took placebo during the study (19% vs. 4%).1
In clinical studies, VENTAVIS has been shown to lower high blood pressure and resistance in the pulmonary artery (main blood vessel leading to the lungs) to allow the heart to pump better.1
VENTAVIS is the only inhaled PAH therapy that has demonstrated clinical improvementdefined as the combination of 3 different clinical measurements. The clinical study showed that PAH patients treated with VENTAVIS:
Were able to walk farther in a timed test1
- On average, patients who took VENTAVIS could walk 40 meters farther than those who did not take VENTAVIS in a 6-minute walk test.
Improved their NYHA Functional Class1
- Many patients who felt short of breath (even when sitting still) found that they were able to be more active.
To learn more about Functional Class, click here.
Experienced decreased worsening of PAH symptoms1
- PAH is a progressive disease, which means it tends to get worse if not treated. Patients who took VENTAVIS had less worsening of PAH.
- It's important to remember that each person responds differently to therapy.
What is VENTAVIS?
VENTAVIS® (iloprost) Inhalation Solution is a prescription medicine used to treat adults with certain kinds of severe pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), a condition in which blood pressure is too high in the blood vessels between the heart and the lungs. VENTAVIS may improve your ability to exercise and your symptoms for a short time by lowering your blood pressure and opening up the blood vessels in your lungs.
The study showing VENTAVIS is effective included mainly patients with NYHA Functional Class III-IV PAH. In these patients, PAH was caused by unidentified or hereditary factors (65%) or connective tissue diseases (23%).
VENTAVIS has not been studied in children younger than 18 years old.
What should I tell my doctor before taking VENTAVIS?
VENTAVIS may not be right for you. Before taking VENTAVIS, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions, including if you:
- have liver or kidney problems. Your doctor may need to give you a lower dose of VENTAVIS.
- are pregnant, or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if VENTAVIS can harm your unborn baby. VENTAVIS should only be used during pregnancy if the benefit to you is worth the possible risk to your baby.
- are breast-feeding. It is not known if VENTAVIS passes into your breast milk. You and your doctor should decide if you will take VENTAVIS or breast feed.
Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
VENTAVIS and other medicines may affect each other causing side effects. VENTAVIS may affect the way other medicines work, and other medicines may affect how VENTAVIS works.
Especially tell your doctor if you take:
- medicines used to treat high blood pressure or heart problems
- medicines that lessen blood clotting (warfarin, Coumadin, Jantoven)
Know the medicines you take. Keep a list of your medicines and show it to your doctor and pharmacist when you get a new medicine.
How should I take VENTAVIS?
- Take VENTAVIS exactly as your doctor tells you to take it. Your doctor may change your dose if needed.
- You should not take VENTAVIS more than every 2 hours. The benefits of VENTAVIS may not last 2 hours, so you may adjust the times that you use it to cover planned activities.
- Do not drink VENTAVIS.
- Do not let VENTAVIS solution come into contact with your skin or eyes. If it does, rinse your skin or eyes with water right away.
- Do not allow other people to be exposed to VENTAVIS while you are breathing it, especially babies and pregnant women.
- If you take too much VENTAVIS, you may have a headache, red face, dizziness, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. If this happens stop taking VENTAVIS. If your symptoms do not go away, call your doctor or get emergency help right away.
What are the possible side effects of VENTAVIS?
VENTAVIS may cause side effects, including feeling dizzy, lightheaded and faint. If you have any of these side effects, you should stand up slowly when you get out of chairs or bed. Tell your doctor if your fainting gets worse during treatment with VENTAVIS. Your doctor may need to change your dose or your treatment.
Do not drive a car or operate any tools or machines if dizziness or fainting from low blood pressure is a problem for you.
You may have trouble breathing after taking VENTAVIS because it may cause the muscles around your airway to tighten (bronchospasm). Get emergency help right away if you have trouble breathing.
Other important side effects of VENTAVIS include:
- red face (flushing)
- increased cough
- low blood pressure
- spasm of your jaw muscles that makes it hard to open your mouth
Talk to your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.
These are not all the possible side effects of VENTAVIS. For more information, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or www.fda.gov/medwatch.
Please see full Prescribing Information.