Rufinamide: Package Insert and Label Information (Page 3 of 4)

8.4 Pediatric Use

Safety and effectiveness have been established in pediatric patients 1 to 17 years of age. The effectiveness of rufinamide in pediatric patients 4 years of age and older was based upon an adequate and well-controlled trial of rufinamide that included both adults and pediatric patients, 4 years of age and older, with Lennox Gastaut Syndrome. The effectiveness in patients 1 to less than 4 years was based upon a bridging pharmacokinetic and safety study [see Dosage and Administration (2.1), Adverse Reactions (6.1), and Clinical Studies (14)]. The pharmacokinetics of rufinamide in the pediatric patients, ages 1 to less than 4 years of age is similar to children older than 4 years of age and adults [see Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

Safety and effectiveness in pediatric patients below the age of 1 year has not been established.

Oral administration of rufinamide (0, 15, 50, or 150 mg/kg) to young rats for 10 weeks starting on postnatal day 7 resulted in decreased brain weights at the mid and high doses and neurobehavioral impairment (learning and memory deficit, altered startle response, decreased locomotor activity) and decreased growth (decreased body weight) at the highest dose tested. The no-effect dose for adverse effects on postnatal development in rats (15 mg/kg) was associated with a plasma exposure (AUC) lower than that in humans at the maximum recommended human dose (MRHD) of 3200 mg/day.

8.5 Geriatric Use

Clinical studies of rufinamide did not include sufficient numbers of subjects aged 65 and over to determine whether they respond differently from younger subjects. 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 of concomitant disease or other drug therapy.

Pharmacokinetics of rufinamide in the elderly are similar to that in the young subjects [see Clinical Pharmacology (12.3) ].

8.6 Renal Impairment

Rufinamide pharmacokinetics in patients with severe renal impairment (creatinine clearance < 30 mL/min) was similar to that of healthy subjects. Dose adjustment in patients undergoing dialysis should be considered [see Clinical Pharmacology (12.3) ].

8.7 Hepatic Impairment

Use of rufinamide in patients with severe hepatic impairment (Child-Pugh score 10 to 15) is not recommended. Caution should be exercised in treating patients with mild (Child-Pugh score 5 to 6) to moderate (Child-Pugh score 7 to 9) hepatic impairment.


Because strategies for the management of overdose are continually evolving, it is advisable to contact a Certified Poison Control Center to determine the latest recommendations for the management of an overdose of any drug.

One overdose of 7,200 mg per day rufinamide was reported in an adult during the clinical trials. The overdose was associated with no major signs or symptoms, no medical intervention was required, and the patient continued in the study at the target dose.

Treatment or Management of Overdose: There is no specific antidote for overdose with rufinamide. If clinically indicated, elimination of unabsorbed drug should be attempted by induction of emesis or gastric lavage. Usual precautions should be observed to maintain the airway. General supportive care of the patient is indicated including monitoring of vital signs and observation of the clinical status of the patient.

Hemodialysis: Standard hemodialysis procedures may result in limited clearance of rufinamide. Although there is no experience to date in treating overdose with hemodialysis, the procedure may be considered when indicated by the patient’s clinical state.


Rufinamide, USP is a triazole derivative structurally unrelated to currently marketed antiepileptic drugs (AEDs). Rufinamide, USP has the chemical name 1-[(2,6-difluorophenyl)methyl]-1H- 1,2,3-triazole-4 carboxamide. It has an empirical formula of C10 H8 F2 N4 O and a molecular weight of 238.2 g/mol. The drug substance is a white to off-white crystalline powder. Rufinamide, USP is practically insoluble in water, slightly soluble in tetrahydrofuran and in methanol, and very slightly soluble in ethanol and in acetonitrile.

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Rufinamide Tablets, USP are available for oral administration as film-coated tablets, scored on both sides, containing either 200 mg or 400 mg of rufinamide, USP. Inactive ingredients are colloidal silicon dioxide, corn starch, croscarmellose sodium, hypromellose, lactose monohydrate, magnesium stearate, sodium lauryl sulfate, talc, iron oxide red, polyethylene glycol, and titanium dioxide.


12.1 Mechanism of Action

The precise mechanism(s) by which rufinamide exerts its antiepileptic effect is unknown.

The results of in vitro studies suggest that the principal mechanism of action of rufinamide is modulation of the activity of sodium channels and, in particular, prolongation of the inactive state of the channel. Rufinamide (≥ 1 μM) significantly slowed sodium channel recovery from inactivation after a prolonged prepulse in cultured cortical neurons, and limited sustained repetitive firing of sodium-dependent action potentials (EC50 of 3.8 µM).

12.3 Pharmacokinetics


Rufinamide oral suspension is bioequivalent on a mg per mg basis to rufinamide tablets. Rufinamide is well absorbed after oral administration. However, the rate of absorption is relatively slow and the extent of absorption is decreased as dose is increased. The pharmacokinetics does not change with multiple dosing. Most elimination of rufinamide is via metabolism, with the primary metabolite resulting from enzymatic hydrolysis of the carboxamide moiety to form the carboxylic acid. This metabolic route is not cytochrome P450 dependent. There are no known active metabolites. Plasma half-life of rufinamide is approximately 6 to 10 hours.

Absorption and Distribution

Following oral administration of rufinamide, peak plasma concentrations occur between 4 and 6 hours (Tmax ) both under fed and fasted conditions. Rufinamide tablets display decreasing bioavailability with increasing dose after single and multiple dose administration. Based on urinary excretion, the extent of absorption was at least 85% following oral administration of a single dose of 600 mg rufinamide tablet under fed conditions.

Multiple dose pharmacokinetics can be predicted from single dose data for both rufinamide and its metabolite. Given the dosing frequency of every 12 hours and the half-life of 6 to 10 hours, the observed steady-state peak concentration of about two to three times the peak concentration after a single dose is expected.

Food increased the extent of absorption of rufinamide in healthy volunteers by 34% and increased peak exposure by 56% after a single dose of 400 mg tablet, although the Tmax was not elevated [see Dosage and Administration (2.2) ].

Only a small fraction of rufinamide (34%) is bound to human serum proteins, predominantly to albumin (27%), giving little risk of displacement drug-drug interactions. Rufinamide was evenly distributed between erythrocytes and plasma. The apparent volume of distribution is dependent upon dose and varies with body surface area. The apparent volume of distribution was about 50 L at 3,200 mg per day.


Rufinamide is extensively metabolized but has no active metabolites. Following a radiolabeled dose of rufinamide, less than 2% of the dose was recovered unchanged in urine. The primary biotransformation pathway is carboxylesterase(s) mediated hydrolysis of the carboxamide group to the acid derivative CGP 47292. A few minor additional metabolites were detected in urine, which appeared to be acyl-glucuronides of CGP 47292. There is no involvement of oxidizing cytochrome P450 enzymes or glutathione in the biotransformation process.

Rufinamide is a weak inhibitor of CYP 2E1. It did not show significant inhibition of other CYP enzymes. Rufinamide is a weak inducer of CYP 3A4 enzymes.

Rufinamide did not show any significant inhibition of P-glycoprotein in an in vitro study.


Renal excretion is the predominant route of elimination for drug related material, accounting for 85% of the dose based on a radiolabeled study. Of the metabolites identified in urine, at least 66% of the rufinamide dose was excreted as the acid metabolite CGP 47292, with 2% of the dose excreted as rufinamide.

The plasma elimination half-life is approximately 6 to 10 hours in healthy subjects and patients with epilepsy.

Special Populations



Based on a population analysis which included a total of 115 patients, including 85 pediatric patients (24 patients ages 1 to 3 years, 40 patients ages 4 to 11 years, and 21 patients ages 12 to 17 years), the pharmacokinetics of rufinamide was similar across all age groups.


The results of a study evaluating single-dose (400 mg) and multiple dose (800 mg per day for 6 days) pharmacokinetics of rufinamide in 8 healthy elderly subjects (65 to 80 years old) and 7 younger healthy subjects (18 to 45 years old) found no significant age-related differences in the pharmacokinetics of rufinamide.


Population pharmacokinetic analyses of females show a 6 to14% lower apparent clearance of rufinamide compared to males. This effect is not clinically important.


In a population pharmacokinetic analysis of clinical studies, no difference in clearance or volume of distribution of rufinamide was observed between the black and Caucasian subjects, after controlling for body size. Information on other races could not be obtained because of smaller numbers of these subjects.

Renal Impairment

Rufinamide pharmacokinetics in 9 patients with severe renal impairment (creatinine clearance < 30 mL per min) was similar to that of healthy subjects. Patients undergoing dialysis 3 hours post rufinamide dosing showed a reduction in AUC and Cmax by 29% and 16%, respectively.

Drug Interactions

Based on in vitro studies, rufinamide shows little or no inhibition of most cytochrome P450 enzymes at clinically relevant concentrations, with weak inhibition of CYP 2E1. Drugs that are substrates of CYP 2E1 (e.g., chlorzoxazone) may have increased plasma levels in the presence of rufinamide, but this has not been studied.

Based on a population pharmacokinetic analysis, rufinamide clearance was decreased by valproate. In pediatric patients, valproate administration may lead to elevated levels of rufinamide by up to 70% [see Drug Interactions (7.2)].

Based on in vivo drug interaction studies with triazolam and oral contraceptives, rufinamide is a weak inducer of the CYP 3A4 enzyme and can decrease exposure of drugs that are substrates of CYP 3A4.

Co-administration and pre-treatment of rufinamide (400 mg twice daily) and triazolam resulted in a 37% decrease in AUC and a 23% decrease in Cmax of triazolam, a CYP 3A4 substrate.
Co-administration of rufinamide (800 mg twice daily for 14 days) and Ortho-Novum 1/35® resulted in a mean decrease in the ethinyl estradiol AUC0 to 24 of 22% and Cmax by 31% and norethindrone AUC0 to 24 by 14% and Cmax by 18%, respectively. The clinical significance of this decrease is unknown [see Drug Interactions (7.3) and Use in Specific Populations (8.3)].

Rufinamide is metabolized by carboxylesterases. Drugs that may induce the activity of carboxylesterases may increase the clearance of rufinamide. Broad-spectrum inducers such as carbamazepine and phenobarbital may have minor effects on rufinamide metabolism via this mechanism. Drugs that are inhibitors of carboxylesterases may decrease metabolism of rufinamide.


13.1 Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility


Rufinamide was given in the diet to mice at 40, 120, and 400 mg/kg per day and to rats at 20, 60, and 200 mg/kg per day for 2 years. The doses in mice were associated with plasma AUCs 0.1 to 1 times the human plasma AUC at the maximum recommended human dose (MRHD, 3,200 mg/day). Increased incidences of tumors (benign bone tumors (osteomas) and/or hepatocellular adenomas and carcinomas) were observed in mice at all doses. Increased incidences of thyroid follicular adenomas were observed in rats at all but the low dose; the low dose is < 0.1 times the MRHD on a mg/m2 basis.


Rufinamide was not mutagenic in the in vitro bacterial reverse mutation (Ames) assay or the in vitro mammalian cell point mutation assay. Rufinamide was not clastogenic in the in vitro mammalian cell chromosomal aberration assay or the in vivo rat bone marrow micronucleus assay.

Impairment of Fertility

Oral administration of rufinamide (doses of 20, 60, 200, and 600 mg/kg per day) to male and female rats prior to mating and throughout mating, and continuing in females up to day 6 of gestation resulted in impairment of fertility (decreased conception rates and mating and fertility indices; decreased numbers of corpora lutea, implantations, and live embryos; increased preimplantation loss; decreased sperm count and motility) at all doses tested. Therefore, a no-effect dose was not established. The lowest dose tested was associated with a plasma AUC ≈ 0.2 times the human plasma AUC at the MRHD.


Adult and Pediatric Patients ages 4 years and older

The effectiveness of rufinamide as adjunctive treatment for the seizures associated with Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome (LGS) in adult and pediatric patients ages 4 years and older was established in a single multicenter, double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized, parallel-group study (N=138). Male and female patients (between 4 and 30 years of age) were included if they had a diagnosis of inadequately controlled seizures associated with LGS (including both atypical absence seizures and drop attacks) and were being treated with 1 to 3 concomitant stable dose AEDs. Each patient must have had at least 90 seizures in the month prior to study entry. After completing a 4-week Baseline Phase on stable therapy, patients were randomized to have rufinamide or placebo added to their ongoing therapy during the 12-week Double-blind Phase. The Double-blind Phase consisted of 2 periods: the Titration Period (1 to 2 weeks) and the Maintenance Period (10 weeks). During the Titration Period, the dose was increased to a target dosage of approximately 45 mg/kg per day (3,200 mg in adults of ≥ 70 kg), given on a twice daily schedule. Dosage reductions were permitted during titration if problems in tolerability were encountered. Final doses at titration were to remain stable during the maintenance period. Target dosage was achieved in 88% of the rufinamide-treated patients. The majority of these patients reached the target dose within 7 days, with the remaining patients achieving the target dose within 14 days.

The primary efficacy variables were:

The percent change in total seizure frequency per 28 days;
The percent change in tonic-atonic (drop attacks) seizure frequency per 28 days;
Seizure severity from the Parent/Guardian Global Evaluation of the patient’s condition. This was a 7-point assessment performed at the end of the Double-blind Phase. A score of +3 indicated that the patient’s seizure severity was very much improved, a score of 0 that the seizure severity was unchanged, and a score of -3 that the seizure severity was very much worse.

The results of the three primary endpoints are shown in Table 7 below.

Table 7: Lennox -Gastaut Syndrome Trial Seizure Frequency Primary Efficacy Variable Results




Median percent change in total seizure frequency per 28 days




Median percent change in tonic-atonic seizure frequency per 28 days




Improvement in Seizure Severity Rating from Global Evaluation




Pediatric Patients ages 1 to less than 4 years

The effectiveness of rufinamide as adjunctive treatment for the seizures associated with Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome in pediatric patients ages 1 year to less than 4 years was established based on a single multi-center, open-label, active-controlled, randomized, pharmacokinetic bridging study. The pharmacokinetic profile of rufinamide is not significantly affected by age either as a continuous covariate (1 to 35 years) or as a categorical covariate (age categories: 1 to less than 4 years and 4 years of age and older), after body weight is taken into consideration. provides trustworthy package insert and label information about marketed drugs as submitted by manufacturers to the US Food and Drug Administration. Package information is not reviewed or updated separately by Every individual package label entry contains a unique identifier which can be used to secure further details directly from the US National Institutes of Health and/or the FDA.

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