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Lumacaftor and Ivacaftor

(loo'' ma kaf' tor) and (eye'' va kaf' tor)

Brand Name(s): Orkambi®

WHY is this medicine prescribed?

Lumacaftor and ivacaftor is used to treat certain types of cystic fibrosis (an inborn disease that causes problems with breathing, digestion, and reproduction) in adults and children 2 years of age and older. Lumacaftor is in a class of medications called cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) correctors. Ivacaftor is in a class of medications called cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) potentiators. Both of these medications work by improving the function of a protein in the body to decrease the build-up of thick mucus in the lungs and improving other symptoms of cystic fibrosis.

Are there OTHER USES for this medicine?

This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

HOW should this medicine be used?

The combination of lumacaftor and ivacaftor comes as a tablet and as granules to take by mouth. It is usually taken with fatty foods twice a day, 12 hours apart. Take lumacaftor and ivacaftor at around the same times every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take lumacaftor and ivacaftor exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.

To prepare a dose of lumacaftor and ivacaftor granules, mix the entire packet of granules in 1 teaspoon (5 mL) of a soft food or liquid (cold or at room temperature) such as yogurt, applesauce, pudding, milk, or juice. Take the entire mixture within 1 hour of mixing the granules with food or a liquid.

Take lumacaftor and ivacaftor with fatty foods such as eggs, avocados, nuts, butter, peanut butter, cheese pizza, whole milk and other whole milk products such as cheese and full fat yogurt. Talk to your doctor about other fatty foods to eat with lumacaftor and ivacaftor.

Lumacaftor and ivacaftor controls cystic fibrosis but does not cure it. Continue to take lumacaftor and ivacaftor even if you feel well. Do not stop taking lumacaftor and ivacaftor without talking to your doctor.

If you do not take lumacaftor and ivacaftor for 7 days or longer, do not start taking it again without talking to your doctor. Your doctor may need to change your dose of this medication or other medications you are taking.

Ask your pharmacist or doctor for a copy of the manufacturer's information for the patient.

What SPECIAL PRECAUTIONS should I follow?

Before taking lumacaftor and ivacaftor,

  • tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to lumacaftor and ivacaftor, any other medications, or any of the ingredients in lumacaftor and ivacaftor tablets or granules. Ask your pharmacist for a list of the ingredients.
  • tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, and nutritional supplements you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention any of the following: certain antifungals such as itraconazole (Onmel, Sporanox), ketoconazole, posaconazole (Noxafil), and voriconazole (Vfend); certain antibiotics such as clarithromycin (Biaxin, in Prevpac), erythromycin (E.E.S., Erythrocin, Eryped, others), rifabutin (Mycobutin) and rifampin (Rifadin, Rifamate, Rifater, Rimactane); certain medications for diabetes such as chlorpropamide (Diabinese), glimepiride (Amaryl, in Duetact), glipizide (Glucotrol), glyburide (Diabeta, Glynase, in Glucovance), repaglinide (Prandin), tolazamide and tolbutamide; digoxin (Lanoxin); ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, in Vicoprofen); certain immunosuppressants such as cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Sandimmune), everolimus (Afinitor, Zortress), sirolimus (Rapamune) and tacrolimus (Astagraf, Prograf); midazolam; montelukast (Singulair); methylprednisolone (Medrol); prednisone (Rayos); certain proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) such as esomeprazole (Nexium, in Vimovo), lansoprazole (Prevacid, in Prevpac), and omeprazole (Prilosec, in Zegerid); ranitidine (Zantac); certain medications for seizures such as carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Epitol, Equetro, Tegretol, Teril), phenobarbital, and phenytoin (Dilantin, Phenytek); certain selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as citalopram (Celexa), escitalopram (Lexapro), and sertraline (Zoloft); triazolam (Halcion); and warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects. Many other medications may also interact with lumacaftor and ivacaftor, so be sure to tell your doctor about all the medications you are taking, even those that do not appear on this list.
  • tell your doctor what herbal products you are taking, especially St. John's wort. Your doctor will probably tell you not to take St. John's wort while taking lumacaftor and ivacaftor.
  • tell your doctor if you have or have ever had breathing problems or conditions, an organ transplant, or liver or kidney disease.
  • tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking lumacaftor and ivacaftor, call your doctor.
  • you should know that lumacaftor and ivacaftor may decrease the effectiveness of hormonal contraceptives (birth control pills, patches, rings, injections, implants, or intrauterine devices). Talk to your doctor about other methods of birth control that will work for you while you are taking lumacaftor and ivacaftor.

What SPECIAL DIETARY instructions should I follow?

Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet.

What should I do IF I FORGET to take a dose?

If you remember the missed dose within 6 hours of the time you were scheduled to take it, take the missed dose right away. However, if more than 6 hours have passed since the time you usually take lumacaftor and ivacaftor, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.

What SIDE EFFECTS can this medicine cause?

Lumacaftor and ivacaftor may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:

  • shortness of breath
  • chest tightness or pain
  • breathing problems
  • diarrhea
  • gas
  • excessive tiredness
  • rash
  • irregular, missed, heavy or painful menstrual periods, especially in women taking hormonal contraceptives
  • runny nose, sneezing, cough, sore throat, or flu-like symptoms
  • sore throat
  • stuffy or runny nose
  • headache

Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately:

  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • loss of appetite
  • pain in the upper right part of the stomach
  • dark urine
  • confusion
  • yellowing of the skin or eyes

Lumacaftor and ivacaftor may cause cataracts (clouding of the lens of the eye that may cause vision problems) in children and teenagers. Children and teenagers taking lumacaftor and ivacaftor should see an eye doctor before and during their treatment. Talk to your child's doctor about the risks of giving lumacaftor and ivacaftor to your child.

Lumacaftor and ivacaftor may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.

If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online (http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).

What should I know about STORAGE and DISPOSAL of this medication?

Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).

Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA's Safe Disposal of Medicines website (http://goo.gl/c4Rm4p) for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.

It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers (such as weekly pill minders and those for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location – one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach. http://www.upandaway.org

What should I do in case of OVERDOSE?

In case of overdose, call the poison control helpline at 1-800-222-1222. Information is also available online at https://www.poisonhelp.org/help. If the victim has collapsed, had a seizure, has trouble breathing, or can't be awakened, immediately call emergency services at 911.

Symptoms of overdose may include:

  • headache
  • rash

What OTHER INFORMATION should I know?

Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will order a lab test before you begin your treatment to see whether your condition can be treated with lumacaftor and ivacaftor as it should be used only in people with a certain genetic make-up. Your doctor will order an eye exam and certain lab tests before and during your treatment to check your body's response to lumacaftor and ivacaftor. Your blood pressure should be checked regularly while you are taking this medication.

Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.

It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.


This report on medications is for your information only, and is not considered individual patient advice. Because of the changing nature of drug information, please consult your physician or pharmacist about specific clinical use.

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists® represents that the information provided hereunder was formulated with a reasonable standard of care, and in conformity with professional standards in the field. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists® makes no representations or warranties, express or implied, including, but not limited to, any implied warranty of merchantability and/or fitness for a particular purpose, with respect to such information and specifically disclaims all such warranties. Users are advised that decisions regarding drug therapy are complex medical decisions requiring the independent, informed decision of an appropriate health care professional, and the information is provided for informational purposes only. The entire monograph for a drug should be reviewed for a thorough understanding of the drug's actions, uses and side effects. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists® does not endorse or recommend the use of any drug. The information is not a substitute for medical care.

Pronunciation Guide for Drug Names is used with permission. © 2009. The United States Pharmacopeial Convention. All Rights Reserved.

AHFS® Patient Medication Information™. © Copyright, 2020. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists®, 4500 East-West Highway, Suite 900, Bethesda, Maryland. All Rights Reserved. Duplication for commercial use must be authorized by ASHP.

Selected Revisions: May 15, 2020.