What is Duopa used for?

This medication is used to treat symptoms of Parkinson's disease (such as shakiness, stiffness, difficulty moving). Parkinson's disease is thought to be caused by too little of a naturally occurring substance (dopamine) in the brain. Levodopa changes into dopamine in the brain, helping to control movement. Carbidopa prevents the breakdown of levodopa in the bloodstream so more levodopa can enter the brain. Carbidopa can also reduce some of levodopa's side effects such as nausea and vomiting. By giving this medication as a continuous infusion, it can help reduce the amount of "off" time (periods of slow movement or stiffness).




Parkinsons Disease
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Duopa Frequently Asked Questions

Read the Medication Guide and the Instructions for Use provided by your health care professional before you start using this medication and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your health care professional.

Give this medication as directed as a continuous infusion into the small intestine using an infusion pump. It is usually given over 16 hours a day and stopped at bedtime. At bedtime, take your dose of immediate-release carbidopa/levodopa tablets by mouth as directed.

When you first start using this medication, it is given through a tube through the nose into the small intestine. After a few days, if the doctor decides that this product is right for you, then the medication will be given through a tube through the abdomen into the small intestine. Getting the tube through the abdomen will require surgery.

Follow all instructions from your health care professional about how to properly use this medication and the infusion pump. Take a cassette containing the medication from the refrigerator and leave it at room temperature for 20 minutes before using. Do not use a cassette for longer than 16 hours or re-use it, even if there is medication left in it. Learn how to store and discard medical supplies safely. Also learn how to properly care for the small hole in your abdomen and the skin area around the tube, and how to avoid infection.

The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Your daily dose is made up of a morning dose, a continuous dose, and extra doses. An extra dose is a small dose of this medication that can be given as needed during the day to treat sudden "off" symptoms. Extra doses should not be given more often than one every 2 hours to avoid causing or worsening movements you cannot control.

It is best to avoid a high-protein diet (it decreases the amount of levodopa that your body takes in) during treatment, unless directed otherwise by your doctor. Separate your dose of this medication by as many hours as possible from any iron supplements or products containing iron (such as multivitamins with minerals) you may take. Iron can reduce the amount of this medication absorbed by the body. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

Do not stop using this medication without consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when this medication is suddenly stopped. Also, if you suddenly stop using this medication, you may have withdrawal symptoms (such as anxiety, depression, confusion, fever, muscle stiffness). To help prevent withdrawal, your doctor may lower your dose slowly. Withdrawal is more likely if you have used this medication for a long time or in high doses. Tell your doctor or pharmacist right away if you have withdrawal.

If you plan to be disconnected from the pump for a short period of time (less than 2 hours, for example, to shower), ask your doctor ahead of time if you should use an extra dose of this medication before you disconnect. If you plan to be disconnected from the pump for longer than 2 hours, ask your doctor what you should do and discuss how you should take carbidopa/levodopa tablets by mouth during this time.

Tell your doctor if your condition does not improve or if it worsens.

IMPORTANT: HOW TO USE THIS INFORMATION: This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.

Duopa Dosage and Form Information

Intestinal Pump Suspension