Medically reviewed by Oliinyk Elizabeth Ivanovna, PharmD. Last updated on 2020-04-10
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Dosage Forms And Strengths
40 mg beige opaque capsule imprinted with “GLD 40”
Storage And Handling
ORACEA (beige opaque capsule imprinted with “GLD 40”) containing doxycycline, USP in an amount equivalent to 40 mg of anhydrous doxycycline. Bottle of 30 (NDC 0299-3822-30).
All products are to be stored at controlled room temperatures of 15°C - 30°C (59°F - 86°F) and dispensed in tight, light-resistant containers (USP). Keep out of reach of children
Revised: 07/2013. Marketed by: Galderma Laboratories, L.P. Fort Worth, Texas 76177 USA. Manufactured by: Catalent Pharma Solutions, LLC Winchester, Kentucky 40391 USA. Revised: 07/2013
ORACEA is indicated for the treatment of only inflammatory lesions (papules and pustules) of rosacea in adult patients. No meaningful effect was demonstrated for generalized erythema (redness) of rosacea.
Limitations of Use
This formulation of doxycycline has not been evaluated in the treatment or prevention of infections. ORACEA should not be used for treating bacterial infections, providing antibacterial prophylaxis, or reducing the numbers or eliminating microorganisms associated with any bacterial disease. To reduce the development of drug-resistant bacteria as well as to maintain the effectiveness of other antibacterial drugs, ORACEA should be used only as indicated.
Efficacy of ORACEA beyond 16 weeks and safety beyond 9 months have not been established.
ORACEA has not been evaluated for the treatment of the erythematous, telangiectatic, or ocular components of rosacea.
General Dosing Information
One ORACEA Capsule (40 mg) should be taken once daily in the morning on an empty stomach, preferably at least one hour prior to or two hours after meals. Administration of adequate amounts of fluid along with the capsules is recommended to wash down the capsule to reduce the risk of esophageal irritation and ulceration.
Important Considerations for Dosing Regimen
The dosage of ORACEA differs from that of doxycycline used to treat infections. Exceeding the recommended dosage may result in an increased incidence of side effects including the development of resistant organisms.
This drug is contraindicated in persons who have shown hypersensitivity to doxycycline or any of the other tetracyclines.
Included as part of the PRECAUTIONS section.
ORACEA should not be used during pregnancy. Doxycycline, like other tetracycline-class antibiotics, can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman. If any tetracycline is used during pregnancy or if the patient becomes pregnant while taking these drugs, the patient should be informed of the potential hazard to the fetus and treatment stopped immediately.
The use of drugs of the tetracycline-class during tooth development (last half of pregnancy, infancy, and childhood up to the age of 8 years) may cause permanent discoloration of the teeth (yellow-gray-brown). This adverse reaction is more common during long-term use of the drug but has been observed following repeated short-term courses. Enamel hypoplasia has also been reported. Tetracycline drugs, therefore, should not be used during tooth development unless other drugs are not likely to be effective or are contraindicated.
All tetracyclines form a stable calcium complex in any bone-forming tissue. A decrease in fibula growth rate has been observed in premature human infants given oral tetracycline in doses of 25 mg/kg every 6 hours. This reaction was shown to be reversible when the drug was discontinued. Results of animal studies indicate that tetracyclines cross the placenta, are found in fetal tissues, and can cause retardation of skeletal development on the developing fetus. Evidence of embryotoxicity has been noted in animals treated early in pregnancy.
Clostridium difficile associated diarrhea (CDAD) has been reported with nearly all antibacterial agents, including doxycycline, and may range in severity from mild to fatal colitis.
Treatment with antibacterial agents alters the normal flora of the colon leading to overgrowth of C. difficile.
C. difficile produces toxins A and B which contribute to the development of CDAD. Hypertoxin producing strains of C. difficile cause increased morbidity and mortality, as these infections can be refractory to antimicrobial therapy and may require colectomy. CDAD must be considered in all patients who present with diarrhea following antibiotic use. Careful medical history is necessary since CDAD has been reported to occur over two months after the administration of antibacterial agents.
If CDAD is suspected or confirmed, ongoing antibiotic use not directed against C. difficile may need to be discontinued. Appropriate fluid and electrolyte management, protein supplementation, antibiotic treatment of C. difficile, and surgical evaluation should be instituted as clinically indicated.
The anti-anabolic action of the tetracyclines may cause an increase in BUN. While this is not a problem in those with normal renal function, in patients with significantly impaired function, higher serum levels of tetracycline-class antibiotics may lead to azotemia, hyperphosphatemia, and acidosis. If renal impairment exists, even usual oral or parenteral doses may lead to excessive systemic accumulations of the drug and possible liver toxicity. Under such conditions, lower than usual total doses are indicated, and if therapy is prolonged, serum level determinations of the drug may be advisable.
Photosensitivity manifested by an exaggerated sunburn reaction has been observed in some individuals taking tetracyclines. Although this was not observed during the duration of the clinical studies with ORACEA, patients should minimize or avoid exposure to natural or artificial sunlight (tanning beds or UVA/B treatment) while using ORACEA. If patients need to be outdoors while using ORACEA, they should wear loose-fitting clothes that protect skin from sun exposure and discuss other sun protection measures with their physician.
Tetracyclines have been associated with the development of autoimmune syndromes. Symptoms may be manifested by fever, rash, arthralgia, and malaise. In symptomatic patients, liver function tests, ANA, CBC, and other appropriate tests should be performed to evaluate the patients. Use of all tetracycline-class drugs should be discontinued immediately.
Tetracycline-class drugs are known to cause hyperpigmentation. Tetracycline therapy may induce hyperpigmentation in many organs, including nails, bone, skin, eyes, thyroid, visceral tissue, oral cavity (teeth, mucosa, alveolar bone), sclerae and heart valves. Skin and oral pigmentation has been reported to occur independently of time or amount of drug administration, whereas other pigmentation has been reported to occur upon prolonged administration. Skin pigmentation includes diffuse pigmentation as well as over sites of scars or injury.
Pseudotumor cerebri (benign intracranial hypertension) in adults has been associated with the use of tetracyclines. The usual clinical manifestations are headache and blurred vision. Bulging fontanels have been associated with the use of tetracyclines in infants. While both of these conditions and related symptoms usually resolve after discontinuation of the tetracycline, the possibility for permanent sequelae exists. Patients should be questioned for visual disturbances prior to initiation of treatment with tetracyclines and should be routinely checked for papiledema while on treatment.
Development of Drug Resistant Bacteria
Bacterial resistance to tetracyclines may develop in patients using ORACEA. Because of the potential for drug-resistant bacteria to develop during the use of ORACEA, it should only be used as indicated.
As with other antibiotic preparations, use of ORACEA may result in overgrowth of non-susceptible microorganisms, including fungi. If superinfection occurs, ORACEA should be discontinued and appropriate therapy instituted. Although not observed in clinical trials with ORACEA, the use of tetracyclines may increase the incidence of vaginal candidiasis. ORACEA should be used with caution in patients with a history of or predisposition to Candida overgrowth.
Periodic laboratory evaluations of organ systems, including hematopoietic, renal and hepatic studies should be performed. Appropriate tests for autoimmune syndromes should be performed as indicated.
Patient Counseling Information
See FDA-approved patient labeling (PATIENT INFORMATION)
Patients taking ORACEA Capsules 40 mg should receive the following information and instructions:
- It is recommended that ORACEA not be used by individuals of either gender who are attempting to conceive a child
- It is recommended that ORACEA not be used by pregnant or breast feeding women
- Patients should be advised that pseudomembranous colitis can occur with doxycycline therapy. If patients develop watery or bloody stools, they should seek medical attention.
- Patients should be advised that pseudotumor cerebri can occur with doxycycline therapy. If patients experience headache or blurred vision they should seek medical attention.
- Photosensitivity manifested by an exaggerated sunburn reaction has been observed in some individuals taking tetracyclines, including doxycycline. Patients should minimize or avoid exposure to natural or artificial sunlight (tanning beds or UVA/B treatment) while using doxycycline. If patients need to be outdoors while using doxycycline, they should wear loose-fitting clothes that protect skin from sun exposure and discuss other sun protection measures with their physician. Treatment should be discontinued at the first evidence of sunburn.
- Concurrent use of doxycycline may render oral contraceptives less effective.
- Autoimmune syndromes, including drug-induced lupus-like syndrome, autoimmune hepatitis, vasculitis and serum sickness have been observed with tetracycline-class drugs, including doxycycline. Symptoms may be manifested by arthralgia, fever, rash and malaise. Patients who experience such symptoms should be cautioned to stop the drug immediately and seek medical help.
- Patients should be counseled about discoloration of skin, scars, teeth or gums that can arise from doxycycline therapy.
- Take ORACEA exactly as directed. Increasing doses beyond 40 mg every morning may increase the likelihood that bacteria will develop resistance and will not be treatable by other antibacterial drugs in the future.
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility
Doxycycline was assessed for potential to induce carcinogenesis in a study in which the compound was administered to Sprague-Dawley rats by gavage at dosages of 20, 75, and 200 mg/kg/day for two years. An increased incidence of uterine polyps was observed in female rats that received 200 mg/kg/day, a dosage that resulted in a systemic exposure to doxycycline approximately 12.2 times that observed in female humans who use ORACEA [exposure comparison based upon area under the curve (AUC) values]. No impact upon tumor incidence was observed in male rats up to at 200 mg/kg/day, or in females at the lower dosages studied.
Doxycyline was assessed for potential to induce carcinogenesis in CD-1 mice by gavage at dosages 20, 75, and 150 mg/kg/day in males and at dosages of 20, 100, and 300 mg/kg/day in females. No impact upon tumor incidence was observed in male and female mice at systemic exposures approximately 4.2 and 8.3 times that observed in humans, respectively.
Doxycycline demonstrated no potential to cause genetic toxicity in an in vitro point mutation study with mammalian cells (CHO/HGPRT forward mutation assay) or in an in vivo micronucleus assay conducted in CD-1 mice. However, data from an in vitro mammalian chromosomal aberration assay conducted with CHO cells suggest that doxycycline is a weak clastogen. Oral administration of doxycycline to male and female Sprague-Dawley rats adversely affected fertility and reproductive performance, as evidenced by increased time for mating to occur, reduced sperm motility, velocity, and concentration, abnormal sperm morphology, and increased pre-and post-implantation losses. Doxycycline induced reproductive toxicity at all dosages that were examined in this study, as even the lowest dosage tested (50 mg/kg/day) induced a statistically significant reduction in sperm velocity. Note that 50 mg/kg/day is approximately 3.6 times the amount of doxycycline contained in the recommended daily dose of ORACEA when compared on the basis of AUC estimates. Although doxycycline impairs the fertility of rats when administered at sufficient dosage, the effect of ORACEA on human fertility is unknown.
Use In Specific Populations
Pregnancy Category D. Results from animal studies indicate that doxycycline crosses the placenta and is found in fetal tissues.
Tetracyclines are excreted in human milk. Because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in infants from doxycycline, ORACEA should not be used in mothers who breastfeed.
ORACEA should not be used in infants and children less than 8 years of age. ORACEA has not been studied in children of any age with regard to safety or efficacy, therefore use in children is not recommended.
Clinical studies of ORACEA did not include sufficient numbers of subjects aged 65 and over to determine whether they respond differently from younger subjects. Other reported clinical experience has not identified differences in responses between elderly and younger patients. In general, dose selection for an elderly patient should be cautious, usually starting at the low end of the dosing range, reflecting the greater frequency of decreased hepatic, renal, or cardiac function, and concomitant disease or other drug therapy.
Pregnancy Category D. Results from animal studies indicate that doxycycline crosses the placenta and is found in fetal tissues.
Clinical Trials Experience
Because clinical trials are conducted under widely varying conditions, adverse reaction rates observed in the clinical trials of a drug cannot be directly compared to rates in the clinical trials of another drug and may not reflect the rates observed in practice.
Adverse Reactions in Clinical Trials of ORACEA
In controlled clinical trials of adult subjects with mild to moderate rosacea, 537 subjects received ORACEA or placebo over a 16-week period. The following table summarizes selected adverse reactions that occurred in the clinical trials at a rate of ≥ 1% for the active arm:
Table 1: Incidence (%) of Selected Adverse Reactions
in Clinical Trials of ORACEA (n=269) vs. Placebo (n=268)
|Nasopharyngitis||13 (5)||9 (3)|
|Pharyngolaryngeal Pain||3 (1)||2 (1)|
|Sinusitis||7 (3)||2 (1)|
|Nasal Congestion||4 (2)||2 (1)|
|Fungal Infection||5 (2)||1 (0)|
|Influenza||5 (2)||3 (1)|
|Diarrhea||12 (5)||7 (3)|
|Abdominal Pain Upper||5 (2)||1 (0)|
|Abdominal Distention||3 (1)||1 (0)|
|Abdominal Pain||3 (1)||1 (0)|
|Stomach Discomfort||3 (1)||2 (1)|
|Dry Mouth||3 (1)||0 (0)|
|Hypertension||8 (3)||2 (1)|
|Blood Pressure Increase||4 (2)||1 (0)|
|Aspartate Aminotransferase Increase||6 (2)||2 (1)|
|Blood Lactate Dehydrogenase Increase||4 (2)||1 (0)|
|Blood Glucose Increase||3 (1)||0 (0)|
|Anxiety||4 (2)||0 (0)|
|Pain||4 (2)||1 (0)|
|Back Pain||3 (1)||0 (0)|
|Sinus Headache||3 (1)||0 (0)|
Note: Percentages based on total number of study participants in each treatment group.
Adverse Reactions for Tetracyclines
The following adverse reactions have been observed in patients receiving tetracyclines at higher, antimicrobial doses:
Gastrointestinal: anorexia, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, glossitis, dysphagia, enterocolitis, and inflammatory lesions (with vaginal candidiasis) in the anogenital region. Hepatotoxicity has been reported rarely. Rare instances of esophagitis and esophageal ulcerations have been reported in patients receiving the capsule forms of the drugs in the tetracycline-class. Most of the patients experiencing esophagitis and/or esophageal ulceration took their medication immediately before lying down.
Skin: maculopapular and erythematous rashes. Exfoliative dermatitis has been reported but is uncommon. Photosensitivity is discussed above.
Renal toxicity: Rise in BUN has been reported and is apparently dose-related. Hypersensitivity reactions: urticaria, angioneurotic edema, anaphylaxis, anaphylactoid purpura, serum sickness, pericarditis, and exacerbation of systemic lupus erythematosus. Blood: Hemolytic anemia, thrombocytopenia, neutropenia, and eosinophilia have been reported.
Because these reactions are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure. The following adverse reactions have been identified during post approval use of ORACEA.
- Nervous system: Pseudotumor cerebri (benign intracranial hypertension), headache.
In case of overdosage, discontinue medication, treat symptomatically, and institute supportive measures. Dialysis does not alter serum half-life and thus would not be of benefit in treating cases of overdose.
ORACEA capsules are not bioequivalent to other doxycycline products. The pharmacokinetics of doxycycline following oral administration of ORACEA was investigated in 2 volunteer studies involving 61 adults. Pharmacokinetic parameters for ORACEA following single oral doses and at steady-state in healthy subjects are presented in Table 2.
Table 2: Pharmacokinetic Parameters [Mean (±SD)] for
|N||Cmax* (ng/mL)||Tmax+ (hr)||AUC0-∞ * (ng•hr/mL)||t½* (hr)|
|Single Dose 40 mg capsules||30||510 ± 220.7||3.00 (1.0-4.1)||9227± 3212.8||21.2 ± 7.6|
|Steady-State# 40 mg capsules||31||600 ± 194.2||2.00 (1.0-4.0)||7543 ± 2443.9||23.2 ± 6.2|
|*Mean +Median #Day 7|
In a single-dose food-effect study involving administration of ORACEA to healthy volunteers, concomitant administration with a 1000 calorie, high-fat, high-protein meal that included dairy products, resulted in a decrease in the rate and extent of absorption (Cmax and AUC) by about 45% and 22%, respectively, compared to dosing under fasted conditions. This decrease in systemic exposure can be clinically significant, and therefore if ORACEA is taken close to meal times, it is recommended that it be taken at least one hour prior to or two hours after meals.
Doxycycline is greater than 90% bound to plasma proteins.
Major metabolites of doxycycline have not been identified. However, enzyme inducers such as barbiturates, carbamazepine, and phenytoin decrease the half-life of doxycycline.
Doxycycline is excreted in the urine and feces as unchanged drug. It is reported that between 29% and 55.4% of an administered dose can be accounted for in the urine by 72 hours. Terminal half-life averaged 21.2 hours in subjects receiving a single dose of ORACEA.