Ivacaftor is used to treat cystic fibrosis (an inherited condition that causes excessively thick and sticky mucus that can clog the lungs causing difficulty of breathing, and it can also block the pancreas which can affect the digestion of food).
Take Ivacaftor exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.
Take this medicine with fat-containing meals (e.g. cheese, avocados, soy-based products, nuts, meat, oily fish). Try to take it at the same time each day.
Ivacaftor is available as oral granules for suspension and film-coated tablets.
If you are taking granules, swallow the granules with a full glass of water or mix it with a spoonful of soft foods such as applesauce, carrots, rice or ice cream, or other liquid such as baby formula or breast milk and drink immediately.
If you are taking a film-coated tablet, swallow it whole. Do not divide, chew or crush the tablet.
Ivacaftor must be taken regularly for it to be effective. Continue taking this medicine even when you feel better. Do not stop taking it unless instructed by the doctor.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal dosing schedule.
DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.
If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- kidney disease
- liver disease
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Some genetic traits can affect your response to this medicine. Your doctor may need to perform genetic testing to know if this medicine is suitable for you.
For as long as you are taking this medicine, your doctor may need to perform blood tests to make sure that your liver and lung function is normal before you take this medicine and thereafter depending on your doctor’s advise. He may also need to have your eyes checked regularly. Your doctor will advise you about how often you need to have this test.
Ivacaftor may cause dizziness. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert or need to see clearly.
Other side effects may include any of the following: headache, diarrhoea, rash, runny nose, ear pain and discomfort, common cold.
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
- medicine to treat fungal infection e.g. ketoconazole, fluconazole
- medicine to treat TB (lung infection known as tuberculosis) e.g. rifampicin
- medicine for epilepsy (fits or seizures) e.g. carbamazepine
- medicine for heart disease e.g. digoxin
- medicines used in organ transplant or certain immune disorders e.g. ciclosporin
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Ivacaftor.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Avoid alcohol and St John's wort.
Avoid excessive consumption of grapefruit or grapefruit juice (more than 1 litre a day).
Avoid Seville oranges.
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.