Patient Stories Real people. Really inspiring stories.
Watch Nicole’s Story
Nicole: There were days where I would just break down crying in my bathroom because I just couldn’t do it. I couldn’t get up. I couldn’t take a shower. I couldn’t physically do anything.
SUPER: Nicole’s Story
Age 23 | Missouri
SUPER: Nicole, 23, is a real patient with treatment-resistant depression and has been compensated for her time by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Nicole: It was bad. I was kind of cruel towards my mom at times. And there were points where she would just cry because of things I said or things I did. And I didn’t understand that I was being cruel. I didn’t understand that at all. I just lashed out. I ended up going to college. I stayed for about two months. Semester started in August. I dropped out and was home before Halloween. I would sleep 18 to 20 hours a day. I wouldn’t shower for three months. It was crazy. I was getting worse over time. I was having a lot more negative thoughts about myself. And so all these negative thoughts about how I just failed—I failed as a person, I failed myself, I failed my mom, I failed my teachers.
It kind of spirals, to the point where I really hated myself. And I remember thinking, “But I just want to fall asleep and never wake up again.” I walked in to my current psychiatrist with a legitimate page and a half full of medicines that I’d already tried that didn’t work. We found out that I have treatment-resistant depression. At some point, my psychiatrist talked to me about this medical trial study for SPRAVATO®. It really does help with treatment-resistant depression.
SUPER: Individual results may vary.
Speaker/SUPER: SPRAVATO® is the first FDA-approved nasal spray, taken along with an oral antidepressant, for adults with treatment-resistant depression. It is not known if SPRAVATO® is safe and effective for use in preventing suicide or in reducing suicidal thoughts or actions. SPRAVATO® is not for use in place of hospitalization if your healthcare provider determines that hospitalization is needed, even if improvement is experienced after the first dose of SPRAVATO®. SPRAVATO® is not for use as a medicine to prevent or relieve pain (anesthetic) and it is not for use in children. SPRAVATO® can cause serious side effects including sleepiness, fainting, dizziness, spinning sensation, anxiety or feeling disconnected from yourself, your thoughts, feelings or things around you. Your healthcare provider will monitor you for at least two hours after taking SPRAVATO®. Please see additional Important Safety Information later in this video.
Nicole: Sometimes with depression, not only do you feel it emotionally, it feels like a weight. I was just so light. That was something so new to me.
SUPER: In a clinical study of adults with treatment-resistant depression, those who took SPRAVATO® and an oral antidepressant experienced a greater reduction of depressive symptoms at four weeks compared to those who received a placebo plus an oral antidepressant.
Nicole: When I was truly in my throes of depression, I would start every day off at like a negative six versus a zero. After I started taking SPRAVATO®, I’m starting off the day waking up neutral, which is the best. My mom is my best friend. She is the best. And she has sacrificed her entire life for me and she’s so good. And she is. I’m actually just finishing up my first semester. Eventually, I want to transfer out of my community college. I’m learning so much stuff and I’m growing as a person. So it’s awesome.
I’m 23 now and I’m almost 24, and I never thought I would live to be 24. I just have so many opportunities. It’s awesome.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
What is the most important information I should know about SPRAVATO®?
SPRAVATO® can cause serious side effects, including:
Sedation and dissociation. SPRAVATO® may cause sleepiness (sedation), fainting, dizziness, spinning sensation, anxiety, or feeling disconnected from yourself, your thoughts, feelings, space and time (dissociation).
- Tell your healthcare provider right away if you feel like you cannot stay awake or if you feel like you are going to pass out.
- Your healthcare provider must monitor you for serious side effects for at least 2 hours after taking SPRAVATO®. Your healthcare provider will decide when you are ready to leave the healthcare setting.
Abuse and misuse. There is a risk for abuse and physical and psychological dependence with SPRAVATO® treatment. Your healthcare provider should check you for signs of abuse and dependence before and during treatment with SPRAVATO®.
- Tell your healthcare provider if you have ever abused or been dependent on alcohol, prescription medicines, or street drugs.
- Your healthcare provider can tell you more about the differences between physical and psychological dependence and drug addiction.
- SPRAVATO® Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS). Because of the risks for sedation, dissociation, and abuse and misuse, SPRAVATO® is only available through a restricted program called the SPRAVATO® Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) Program. SPRAVATO® can only be administered at healthcare settings certified in the SPRAVATO® REMS Program. Patients treated in outpatient healthcare settings (e.g., medical offices and clinics) must be enrolled in the program.
Increased risk of suicidal thoughts and actions. Antidepressant medicines may increase suicidal thoughts and actions in some people 24 years of age and younger, especially within the first few months of treatment or when the dose is changed.
SPRAVATO® is not for use in children
- Depression and other serious mental illnesses are the most important causes of suicidal thoughts and actions. Some people may have a higher risk of having suicidal thoughts or actions. These include people who have (or have a family history of) depression or a history of suicidal thoughts or actions.
How can I watch for and try to prevent suicidal thoughts and actions in myself or a family member?
- Pay close attention to any changes, especially sudden changes, in mood, behavior, thoughts, or feelings, or if you develop suicidal thoughts or actions.
- Tell your healthcare provider right away if you have any new or sudden changes in mood, behavior, thoughts, or feelings.
- Keep all follow-up visits with your healthcare provider as scheduled. Call your healthcare provider between visits as needed, especially if you have concerns about symptoms.
Tell your healthcare provider right away if you or your family member have any of the following symptoms, especially if they are new, worse, or worry you:
- suicide attempts
- thoughts about suicide or dying
- worsening depression
- other unusual changes in behavior or mood
Do not take SPRAVATO® if you:
- have blood vessel (aneurysmal vascular) disease (including in the brain, chest, abdominal aorta, arms and legs)
- have an abnormal connection between your veins and arteries (arteriovenous malformation)
- have a history of bleeding in the brain
- are allergic to esketamine, ketamine, or any of the other ingredients in SPRAVATO®.
If you are not sure if you have any of the above conditions, talk to your healthcare provider before taking SPRAVATO®.
Before you take SPRAVATO®, tell your healthcare provider about all of your medical conditions, including if you:
have heart or brain problems, including:
- high blood pressure (hypertension)
- slow or fast heartbeats that cause shortness of breath, chest pain, lightheadedness, or fainting
- history of heart attack
- history of stroke
- heart valve disease or heart failure
- history of brain injury or any condition where there is increased pressure in the brain
- have liver problems
- have ever had a condition called “psychosis” (see, feel, or hear things that are not there, or believe in things that are not true).
are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. SPRAVATO® may harm your baby. You should not take SPRAVATO® if you are pregnant.
- Tell your healthcare provider right away if you become pregnant during treatment with SPRAVATO®.
- If you are able to become pregnant, talk to your healthcare provider about methods to prevent pregnancy during treatment with SPRAVATO®.
- There is a pregnancy registry for women who are exposed to SPRAVATO® during pregnancy. The purpose of the registry is to collect information about the health of women exposed to SPRAVATO® and their baby. If you become pregnant during treatment with SPRAVATO®, talk to your healthcare provider about registering with the National Pregnancy Registry for Antidepressants at 1-844-405-6185 or online at https://womensmentalhealth.org/clinical-and-research-programs/pregnancyregistry/antidepressants/.
- are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. You should not breastfeed during treatment with SPRAVATO®.
Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines that you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins and herbal supplements. Taking SPRAVATO® with certain medicine may cause side effects.
Especially tell your healthcare provider if you take central nervous system (CNS) depressants, psychostimulants, or monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) medicines. Keep a list of them to show to your healthcare provider and pharmacist when you get a new medicine.
How will I take SPRAVATO®?
- You will take SPRAVATO® nasal spray yourself, under the supervision of a healthcare provider in a healthcare setting. Your healthcare provider will show you how to use the SPRAVATO® nasal spray device.
- Your healthcare provider will tell you how much SPRAVATO® you will take and when you will take it.
- Follow your SPRAVATO® treatment schedule exactly as your healthcare provider tells you to.
- During and after each use of the SPRAVATO® nasal spray device, you will be checked by a healthcare provider who will decide when you are ready to leave the healthcare setting.
- You will need to plan for a caregiver or family member to drive you home after taking SPRAVATO®.
- If you miss a SPRAVATO® treatment, your healthcare provider may change your dose and treatment schedule.
- Some people taking SPRAVATO® get nausea and vomiting. You should not eat for at least 2 hours before taking SPRAVATO® and not drink liquids at least 30 minutes before taking SPRAVATO®.
- If you take a nasal corticosteroid or nasal decongestant medicine take these medicines at least 1 hour before taking SPRAVATO®.
What should I avoid while taking SPRAVATO®?
Do not drive, operate machinery, or do anything where you need to be completely alert after taking SPRAVATO®. Do not take part in these activities until the next day following a restful sleep. See “What is the most important information I should know about SPRAVATO®?”
What are the possible side effects of SPRAVATO®?
SPRAVATO® may cause serious side effects including:
- See “What is the most important information I should know about SPRAVATO®?”
- Increased blood pressure. SPRAVATO® can cause a temporary increase in your blood pressure that may last for about 4 hours after taking a dose. Your healthcare provider will check your blood pressure before taking SPRAVATO® and for at least 2 hours after you take SPRAVATO®. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you get chest pain, shortness of breath, sudden severe headache, change in vision, or seizures after taking SPRAVATO®.
- Problems with thinking clearly. Tell your healthcare provider if you have problems thinking or remembering.
- Bladder problems. Tell your healthcare provider if you develop trouble urinating, such as a frequent or urgent need to urinate, pain when urinating, or urinating frequently at night.
The most common side effects of SPRAVATO® when used along with an antidepressant taken by mouth include:
- feeling disconnected from yourself, your thoughts, feelings and things around you
- feeling sleepy
- spinning sensation
- decreased feeling of sensitivity (numbness)
- feeling anxious
- lack of energy
- increased blood pressure
- feeling drunk
- feeling very happy or excited
If these common side effects occur, they usually happen right after taking SPRAVATO® and go away the same day.
These are not all the possible side effects of SPRAVATO®.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
© Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 2021. All rights reserved. 08/21 cp-72100v5
There’s an increased risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior with SPRAVATO®. Call your healthcare provider right away if you have new or sudden changes in mood, behavior, thoughts or feelings, or if you develop suicidal thoughts or behavior.
SPRAVATO® helped Nicole’s treatment-resistant depression. Now, she’s resuming her education and sharing her story.
Allison’s son tried many oral antidepressants without relief. Now, because of SPRAVATO®, Allison’s son is starting to feel like himself again.
These are individual testimonials and individual results may vary. When discussing treatment with SPRAVATO®, be sure to tell your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, including if you have a history of abusing prescription or street drugs or a problem with alcohol. Tell your healthcare provider if you are pregnant or are planning to become pregnant. Your healthcare provider will discuss the possible side effects of SPRAVATO® so that you can decide together if SPRAVATO® may be right for you.
Have questions about SPRAVATO®?
Help is available 24/7. If you’re struggling with suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255.
Help is available 24/7. If you’re struggling with suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255.