Whether you’re already taking Otezla or just want to learn more, it’s normal to have some questions about treatment. Take a look at some of the most commonly asked questions about Otezla.
Otezla is a prescription pill used to treat adults with plaque psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis. It is also approved for the treatment of oral ulcers associated with a rare condition called Behçet’s Disease.
Even though plaque psoriasis shows up on your skin, it’s actually caused by inflammation inside your body. Taking a pill like Otezla means you’re treating psoriasis where it starts. Talk to your doctor to make sure Otezla is the right treatment option for you.
No, Otezla is not a biologic. It is a phosphodiesterase 4 (PDE4) inhibitor. This means it reduces the activity of an enzyme called PDE4 inside the cells—which is then thought to reduce inflammation and plaque psoriasis symptoms. Learn more about how Otezla works.
When you start Otezla, you will slowly increase your dose over the first 5 days of treatment until you reach the recommended dose. This is known as a titration. People with severe kidney disease will follow a different schedule.
Titration is meant to help reduce the stomach and digestive side effects (nausea and diarrhea) that can happen when starting Otezla.
After your first 5 days, you will take Otezla twice daily—one pill in the morning and one at night. Be sure to take Otezla as directed by your doctor. Learn more by clicking here.
The most common side effects of Otezla include diarrhea, nausea, upper respiratory tract infection, tension headache, and headache. These are not all the possible side effects of Otezla. Ask your doctor about other potential side effects.
Tell your doctor about any side effect that bothers you or does not go away. Learn more about the side effects of Otezla.
Yes, so it’s important to discuss all the medications you’re currently taking with your doctor. It may help to compile a list, and bring it to your appointment. You can also ask a pharmacist if you should not take some medications with Otezla.
Otezla has been studied in multiple clinical trials and has been approved by the FDA to treat both plaque psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. Over 840,000 people have now taken Otezla, and for almost 9 years, doctors have been prescribing it.
Otezla has been studied and approved to treat both plaque psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. Both of these conditions are actually thought to be caused by an overactive immune system and are closely linked. In fact, up to 40% of people with psoriasis develop psoriatic arthritis.
Otezla has not been studied in pregnant women or women who are breastfeeding. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or planning to breastfeed.
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-332-1088.
The exact way in which Otezla works is not completely understood. Research has shown that Otezla blocks the activity of an enzyme found inside cells called phosphodiesterase 4 (PDE4). PDE4 is believed to contribute to the inflammation that comes with plaque psoriasis. By blocking PDE4, Otezla is thought to help reduce inflammation inside the body and lessen psoriasis symptoms. Learn more details about how Otezla works, or watch the video below.
Even though you may be feeling better, plaque psoriasis doesn’t go away. Otezla should be taken as prescribed, at the same times every day. Talk to your doctor if you experience any side effects.
Your Otezla prescription will be delivered to you each month by a specialty pharmacy. Not sure what that means? Specialty pharmacies operate a lot like retail pharmacies, but they provide additional services and deliver your medication right to your door. Your specialty pharmacy will coordinate the delivery of your Otezla prescription and offer support, including access to pharmacists, refill reminders when you’re running low on your medication, and more.
Learn more about the ways Amgen® SupportPlus can help
you access your prescribed medication. Please call
1-844-4OTEZLA (1-844-468-3952). Someone is available 8 AM
– 8 PM ET, Monday – Friday.
Find out more about Amgen SupportPlus.
We know every patient has unique needs. And we’re here to provide financial support information and resources, regardless of your current financial situation or type of insurance you have.
Commercial Insurance (self-purchased or through an employer) If you are commercially insured, you can get Otezla for $0 per month by enrolling in the $0 Co-Pay* Program.
Amgen SupportPlus Representatives can help you understand your current Medicare insurance plan and anticipated out-of-pocket costs for Otezla. If you want to switch Medicare plans, we can help identify other local options. We may also be able to refer you, if eligible, for Medicare Extra Help (Low Income Subsidy) or put you in touch with independent nonprofit foundations.†
Please contact Amgen SupportPlus at 1-844-4OTEZLA (1-844-468-3952). Our team is here and ready to help Monday-Friday, 8 AM-8 PM ET.
I do not have insurance
If you are eligible, Amgen SupportPlus Representatives can provide information about independent nonprofit foundations that may be able to help.* Click here to get started by enrolling in Amgen SupportPlus or by calling 1-844-4OTEZLA (1-844-468-3952).
A co-pay (or co-payment) is a flat fee that is paid each time a patient goes to a doctor or fills a prescription. The $0 Co-Pay Program helps reduce that fee.
Patients with commercial insurance (self-purchased or through an employer) usually pay what is called the “out-of-pocket” cost for Otezla. This is the amount they owe after their insurance coverage has kicked in and any co-pays or deductibles have been applied.
Whether you were just prescribed Otezla or have been on Otezla, you can enroll in the $0 Co-Pay Program today. Once you have enrolled, you’ll receive a digital co-pay card via email. Share the member ID number on your card with your specialty pharmacy to begin lowering your out-of-pocket costs. Eligible, commercially insured patients may pay as little as $0 per month for Otezla.
The pharmacy can apply the $0 Co-Pay Card benefit (automatically) each month up to the annual maximum benefit of the co-pay program
The $0 Co-Pay Program is not for underinsured, Medicare, or Medicaid patients. If this is you, our team of Amgen SupportPlus Representatives can assist you with any questions you may have about your plan.
*Eligibility criteria and program maximums apply. Please see the full Terms and Conditions.
Signing up is simple, just fill out the form at Otezla.com/enroll, and if you’re eligible, you’ll automatically be enrolled. Once you have enrolled, you’ll receive a digital co-pay card via email. Share the member ID number on your card with your specialty pharmacy to begin lowering your out-of-pocket costs.
If you prefer to enroll over the phone, you can call 1-844-4OTEZLA (1-844-468-3952) and speak to an AmgenSupportPlus Representative (available 8 AM – 8 PM ET, Monday – Friday).
The Otezla Co-Pay Card is available to eligible patients with commercial insurance (usually self-purchased or through an employer) regardless of income level.
Re-enrollment in the program is required at regular intervals. You may continue in the program as long as you re-enroll as required by Amgen and continue to meet all of the program’s eligibility requirements during participation in the program.
If at any point a patient’s insurance changes, their enrollment in the program may be re-evaluated. They must continue to meet the program’s eligibility requirements to continue receiving benefits.
The scalp is one of the areas that’s most commonly affected by plaque psoriasis and can be hard to treat. It’s not just your everyday dandruff—scalp psoriasis is a form of plaque psoriasis that appears as thick, crusted plaques which cover parts of your scalp. It can extend beyond the hairline to the forehead, around the ears, and the back of the neck. It can also be extremely itchy.
Psoriatic arthritis is an autoimmune disease. The most common symptoms of psoriatic arthritis include joint swelling, tenderness, and pain.
Up to 40% of people with psoriasis also develop psoriatic arthritis, which can cause pain, stiffness, and swelling in and around the joints. Otezla can also treat psoriatic arthritis. Talk to your doctor if you experience any joint symptoms.
Your doctor is always your best resource for any questions you might have about treatment, but we can help you find more information about getting started with Otezla once prescribed. For more information or to enroll into the Amgen SupportPlus program at otezla.com/supportplus.
Today, you can have an appointment from the comfort of your home. If you already have a dermatologist, check with them to find out which virtual or telehealth options may be available to you.
If they’re not available, or you don’t have a dermatologist, there are many telehealth services to choose from, such as Dermatologist On Call.
As with any appointment, it’s important to remember that speaking with a dermatologist through a telehealth platform does not guarantee a prescription of Otezla or any other medication.
Otezla is delivered by a specialty pharmacy. Currently, we don’t anticipate any interruption in Otezla shipments.
No, Amgen continues to provide an uninterrupted supply of medicines for patients around the world. We don’t anticipate a shortage of Otezla at this time.
If you have questions or concerns regarding your supply of Otezla, you should contact your specialty pharmacy or Amgen SupportPlus at 1-844-4OTEZLA (1-844-468-3952).
You must not take Otezla if you are allergic to apremilast or to any of the ingredients in Otezla.
Otezla can cause allergic reactions, sometimes severe. Stop using Otezla and call your healthcare provider or seek emergency help right away if you develop any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: trouble breathing or swallowing, raised bumps (hives), rash or itching, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, throat or arms.
Otezla can cause severe diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting, especially within the first few weeks of treatment. Use in elderly patients and the use of certain medications with Otezla appears to increase the risk of complications from having severe diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting. Tell your doctor if any of these conditions occur.
Otezla is associated with an increase in depression. In clinical studies, some patients reported depression, or suicidal behavior while taking Otezla. Some patients stopped taking Otezla due to depression. Before starting Otezla, tell your doctor if you have had feelings of depression, or suicidal thoughts or behavior. Be sure to tell your doctor if any of these symptoms or other mood changes develop or worsen during treatment with Otezla.
Some patients taking Otezla lost body weight. Your doctor should monitor your weight regularly. If unexplained or significant weight loss occurs, your doctor will decide if you should continue taking Otezla.
Some medicines may make Otezla less effective and should not be taken with Otezla. Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and nonprescription medicines.
The most common side effects of Otezla include diarrhea, nausea, upper respiratory tract infection, tension headache, and headache. These are not all the possible side effects with Otezla. Ask your doctor about other potential side effects. Tell your doctor about any side effect that bothers you or does not go away.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or planning to breastfeed.
Please click here for the Full Prescribing Information for Otezla.
Otezla® (apremilast) is a prescription medicine used to treat adult patients with: