Approved Uses

Otezla® (apremilast) is a prescription medicine used to treat adult patients with:

 
Otezla is for adult patients with
plaque psoriasis
Otezla for psoriatic arthritis
Otezla for oral ulcers
in Behçet’s Disease
SEE MORE

APPROVED USES

Otezla® (apremilast) is a prescription medicine used to treat adult patients with:

  • Plaque psoriasis for whom phototherapy or systemic therapy is appropriate.
  • Active psoriatic arthritis.
  • Oral ulcers associated with Behçet’s Disease.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

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.

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.

Please click here for the Full Prescribing Information for Otezla.

Stories from people who chose Otezla for psoriatic arthritis

We asked a few people who take Otezla for psoriatic arthritis to tell us about their experience—to share their stories around living with psoriatic arthritis, working with their doctor, and ultimately choosing Otezla. Watch and read their stories below.

Note: In clinical studies, some people with active psoriatic arthritis had less joint pain and swelling after taking Otezla for 4 months.

Meet Anne

Anne was a big-time crafter until her psoriatic arthritis symptoms got in the way. Since switching treatments to Otezla, she's gotten back to the things she loves.

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  • Before Jeanie’s symptoms started, she was always laughing. She worked out regularly, rode her bike, and went for walks.

    When she looks back on it, she recalls her pain starting to occur gradually. Her joints began to get sore. Her back and shoulders felt achy. It was an irritating nuisance, but I could handle it. Sarcastically, she’d say things like, “Oh no, my body’s falling apart,” but it was no big deal. She could laugh it off. But over time, the pain got worse. Soon, she began to feel as though she couldn’t do anything without pain. She couldn’t sit through a long movie, let alone ride her bike. The pain had become my new normal. Jeanie’s doctor told her she had arthritis, and it was all part of the normal aging process—that she’d have to learn to live with it. She trusted her doctor, but she felt she wasn’t old, not by a long shot. She took the anti-inflammatory medications prescribed by her doctor, and went to physical therapy, but nothing seemed to help. I knew this had to be more than the everyday wear and tear, garden-variety arthritis. For years, Jeanie suffered through the pain, seeing doctors and specialists that couldn’t seem to come up with an answer for what she was going through. One day, Jeanie’s daughter said to her, “Mommy, did you want me to pump the gas for you?” and Jeanie realized she had to find the right answers to her illness. A few years ago, Jeanie and her husband moved to a large city where she saw a rheumatologist—the man who would become her knight in shining armor. His team ran the same tests other doctors had run, and Jeanie went back in expecting to hear the same thing. But this time, it was different. “You have psoriatic arthritis,” he told her. Though upset, Jeanie’s main emotion was happiness: she was thrilled to finally have a real name for the debilitating pain that had been her constant companion for years. I finally felt validated that what I’d been experiencing was actually real. Jeanie’s rheumatologist answered her questions, and put her on anti-inflammatory medications. And then, Jeanie experienced her worst symptoms yet: a moment where the smallest movement caused her body to feel like it was on fire. Obviously, her current treatment plan wasn’t working. At an appointment a few months later, Jeanie’s doctor talked to her about Otezla® (apremilast). They discussed possible side effects, and Jeanie’s doctor mentioned that it was a pill taken orally—and one he thought would be beneficial in the treatment of her psoriatic arthritis. Jeanie liked that Otezla wasn’t a biologic or an injection—that it came as a pill that she would take twice daily. So she told her rheumatologist she wanted to try it. I take the pill every morning and every night, and it's just a part of my daily routine now. Jeanie experienced mild headaches as a side effect of Otezla, but they have since gone away. After being on Otezla for 4 months, Jeanie noticed a change in how she felt. The swelling in her fingers and toes lessened, and the joint pain decreased. These days, she’s staying positive and looking ahead. She’s gotten back on her bike, and she’s slowly starting to work out again. By finding the right doctor and getting educated, Jeanie found her voice and was empowered to make the best decisions for her.

  • Bryan is a runner who believes running is as much a mental exercise as it is a physical one.

    Bryan likes to compare his journey with psoriatic arthritis to training for and running a race. Even though there have been many times when he wanted to give up, he has always pushed through. In his early 20s, Bryan underwent an extreme physical transformation. Years of unhealthy habits had led to him being extremely out of shape, and Bryan was determined to do something about it. He started running and lost weight quickly while building up his self-confidence. Running became one of the most important parts of his life. For everyone who said it was impossible, I proved them all wrong. Running kept him in great shape. But soon, Bryan’s health caught up with him again. At the age of 28, he began experiencing pain in his hands. He was treated with anti-inflammatories, but they didn’t help much, and he struggled with constant pain and inflammation over the next few years. The doctors didn’t know where the pain was coming from and couldn't identify how to treat it. Since changing his eating and exercise habits had helped in the past, Bryan attempted to fix his pain by eating gluten-free, but diet changes didn’t help. He still experienced joint pain and joint swelling. Bryan tried to keep going, to push through the pain. At age 36, the toes on both of his feet began to swell. The pain was so bad that he limped when he walked. And before he knew it, his Achilles tendon hurt, too. Running was out of the question. In addition, one of his favorite things to do was to walk his son from the parking lot to the front door of his school each morning, and Bryan found he could barely do that. I’m not the type that cares what others think, but this was hard for my son. I wanted him to believe that I was the cool, tough dad. One day, Bryan woke up to find that his pain was so intense that he could barely walk. He began to think that all his health issues might be related and made an appointment with a rheumatologist who diagnosed him with psoriatic arthritis. She explained his treatment options: anti-inflammatories mixed with other medications. Bryan didn’t feel like these options were right for him and vowed to once again try to fix the pain himself. Though he tried every natural and diet-related remedy, Bryan continued to experience chronic pain and swelling. Bryan made an appointment with his father’s rheumatologist to get a second opinion and found the doctor for him. For a while, he treated his psoriatic arthritis with anti-inflammatories, but he was unable to tolerate the side effects and kept looking for other treatment options. When he heard about Otezla, he brought it up with his doctor. They discussed the risks and benefits and decided to give it a try. Bryan was happy to hear that Otezla’s Prescribing Information has no requirement for routine lab monitoring—he hated getting his blood drawn. Bryan started Otezla as soon as it was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). His doctor informed him that in clinical studies, some patients responded to Otezla, in addition to explaining that treatment with Otezla was associated with depression and weight decrease, and that taking other medicines with Otezla may decrease its effectiveness. And while he experienced the side effects of nausea and diarrhea during the first few days, he stuck with it and the side effects subsided. Bryan knew it was important to continue to take his Otezla each day, as directed by his doctor. Over time, Bryan’s side effects went away, and after 4 months on treatment, he realized he was experiencing less pain, swelling, and tenderness. Though no day is perfect, Bryan is glad to have found a treatment that works for him—and even more glad to have never given up. I didn’t think I was ever going to put on my sneakers again. Otezla has made a difference for me.

  • To Cindy, being active is everything.

    Cindy has always been confident and outgoing. She loves making friends and playing sports, especially softball and bowling. When her psoriatic arthritis showed up, the things she loved the most became difficult. Cindy’s first symptoms appeared right around the time she became a new mom to twin boys. Her knees had begun to swell, and she had pain that didn’t go away. Cindy went to her doctor, and after describing her symptoms, was given her diagnosis: she had psoriatic arthritis. Cindy couldn’t believe she had an incurable disease. Soon, her psoriatic arthritis had progressed, affecting her elbows and hands. Cindy had to put all the sports she loved—volleyball, softball, and bowling—on pause. Having been active all her life, Cindy couldn’t believe she was suffering from something that took her out of the game. In my head, I couldn’t get around the fact that I had an incurable disease. Cindy decided to combat her psoriatic arthritis the only way she knew how—by doing research. That research led her to Otezla. Cindy liked the fact that it was a pill, and that it was different from all the other treatments she had tried before. She printed out her research and took it to her doctor the very next day. After discussing what to expect, from side effects to results, Cindy’s doctor agreed Otezla was a good fit for her and gave her a starter kit, so she could get started that very day. After a few months, Cindy noticed relief in her joints. And with less swelling, tenderness, and pain, she’s now able to spend more time with her boys—and show them a better version of herself. For the first time in their lives, my boys know what it’s like to see their mom living well.

  • Jessie was only 21 years old when she was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis, and the news was a bit of a shock for her.

    While she was happy to have a name to put to her symptoms, she found it hard to explain her diagnosis to others—and hard to understand herself. While she knew a few family members with arthritis, she didn’t know anyone who had psoriatic arthritis. Back then, she says, no one really talked about it, and her doctors weren’t really clear on what to expect going forward. It was kind of like a guessing game of what was to come. With swollen toes, Jessie found it hard to walk—her favorite high heels were out of the question—but to those around her, she looked “fine.” Frustrated, she found it hard to answer queries about why she “didn’t have the energy that other people her age had.” To those around her, her psoriatic arthritis was an “invisible illness,” but to Jessie, it was something that weighed on her each and every day. My friends would say, ‘What’s wrong? You look fine.’ In addition, being diagnosed so young was difficult for Jessie. Every time she went to her rheumatologist’s office, she’d notice that she was the youngest one in the waiting room. It was hard for her to relate to those around her—especially when they were generations older than her. I felt like I was surrounded by people in wheelchairs and walkers. She was determined to find a treatment that worked for her and tried a few different things before landing on Otezla with her rheumatologist. Her rheumatologist told her Otezla was associated with depression and weight loss, and that taking other medicines with Otezla could decrease its effectiveness. He also told Jessie about potential side effects with Otezla, including diarrhea, nausea, and headache. After they talked about it, Jessie decided to give Otezla a try. After 4 months on Otezla, Jessie felt a change in her symptoms. Since then, she’s gotten back to a few of her hobbies, including playing the piano—and she’s put her high heels back in rotation. Nowadays, she’s eager to share her story with others living with psoriatic arthritis, and in particular, to urge them to advocate for themselves. Try to find a doctor, and a treatment, that you’re comfortable with.

SEE MORE

*Certain restrictions apply.

APPROVED USES

Otezla® (apremilast) is a prescription medicine used to treat adult patients with:

  • Plaque psoriasis for whom phototherapy or systemic therapy is appropriate.
  • Active psoriatic arthritis.
  • Oral ulcers associated with Behçet’s Disease.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

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.

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.

Please click here for the Full Prescribing Information for Otezla.

Important Safety Information

See more

You must not take Otezla if you are allergic to apremilast or to any of the ingredients in Otezla.

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.

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