All medications come with some risk of side effects, and Otezla is no different. These side effects usually occur during the first few weeks of treatment and tend to go away as you keep taking it.
The table below includes the most common side effects of Otezla compared to placebo (sugar pill) seen in clinical studies involving adults with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis:
| Most common side effects |
(up to week 16)
| Otezla |
| Placebo |
|Upper respiratory tract infection||9%||6%|
In a clinical study of Otezla, a total of 595 adults with mild to moderate plaque psoriasis were given Otezla 30 mg twice daily (297 people) or placebo twice daily (298 people). Overall, the safety seen in the Otezla group was similar to the safety seen in people with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis.
These are not all the possible side effects of Otezla. Ask your doctor about potential side effects, and let them know about any side effect that bothers you or doesn’t go away.
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: