What you need to know about using NATPARA
NATPARA is available as an injection (shot). You will need to inject NATPARA once a day directly under the skin of the thigh. Be sure to inject a different thigh (alternate thigh) every day. A Nurse Educator will teach you how to properly prepare, administer and store your NATPARA when you start on therapy.
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NATPARA (parathyroid hormone) for Injection dosing options and considerations before starting
NATPARA offers dosing options to help your doctor find the dose that is best for you
The starting dose for NATPARA is 50 mcg once a day as a subcutaneous injection in the thigh (alternate thigh every day). Your doctor will adjust the doses of NATPARA, calcium, and vitamin D you take based on what you need. If necessary, your doctor will increase the dose of NATPARA.
A majority of patients in the NATPARA clinical study required a maximum dose of 100 mcg. The goal of treatment is to have you take the lowest dose of NATPARA that will achieve a calcium level within the lower half of the normal range without the need for active forms of vitamin D and with enough calcium to meet your body’s daily needs.
With 4 dosage strengths of NATPARA, your doctor can find the dose that is right for you
Use NATPARA exactly as your doctor tells you to. Do not stop taking or change your dose of NATPARA unless your doctor tells you to. Your calcium level could become dangerously low.
If you miss a day or forget to give your daily NATPARA injection, give your injection as soon as you remember and call your doctor right away. You may need to take more calcium. Take your next dose of NATPARA the next day as prescribed.
If you use more than your daily dose of NATPARA, call your doctor right away.
Before starting NATPARA, talk to your doctor and review the Medication Guide and Instructions for Use.
Before you start using NATPARA, tell your doctor about all your medical conditions, including if you:
- Have Paget’s disease or other bone disease
- Have or have had cancer in your bones
- Have or have had radiation therapy
- Have or have had too much calcium in your blood
- Have or have had high blood levels of certain electrolytes (for example, alkaline phosphatase)
- Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if NATPARA will harm your unborn baby or if NATPARA passes into your breast milk. You and your doctor should decide if you will use NATPARA or breastfeed. You should not do both
Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
NATPARA and other medicines may affect each other, causing side effects. Especially tell your doctor if you are taking medicines that contain digoxin, alendronate, calcium supplements, or food products that contain calcium or active vitamin D.
Know the medicines you take. Keep a list of them to show your doctor or pharmacist each time you get a new medicine.
NATPARA may cause serious side effects like allergic (hypersensitivity) reaction, including anaphylaxis.
Tell your healthcare provider or get emergency medical help right away if you have any of the following symptoms of an allergic reaction: swelling in your face, lips, mouth, or tongue; breathing problems; fainting, dizziness, feeling lightheaded (low blood pressure); fast heartbeat; itching; rash; or, hives.
Common side effects
The most common side effects associated with NATPARA were:
Paresthesia (tingling, tickling, or burning feeling of the skin), hypocalcemia (low blood calcium), headache, hypercalcemia (high blood calcium), nausea, hypoaesthesia (reduced sense of touch or sensation), diarrhea, vomiting, arthralgia (pain in joints), hypercalciuria (too much calcium in urine), and pain in extremity.
Regular monitoring is key to successful treatment
Your doctor will need to monitor how NATPARA is working
Keeping track of hypoparathyroidism is critical to good management. You can work together with your doctor by telling him or her about any symptoms you may be experiencing. Your doctor will take blood tests to ensure your calcium levels are within a target range.
Your doctor will need to monitor how NATPARA is working. It is important to have routine blood tests and a yearly or twice yearly 24-hour urine collection test once the maintenance dose is achieved, so that your doctor can measure your level of calcium and see how well you are responding to NATPARA.