TIPS TO NAVIGATE IPLEDGE
Isotretinoin is a medication that was FDA approved in 1982 for the treatment of severe or scarring acne. We also use it for acne that is not improving with alternative medications. Most patients are on isotretinoin for about six months. Following these simple guidelines below will help ensure your course is uninterrupted and runs smoothly
Every person on isotretinoin, male and female, must be enrolled in an FDA-mandated program called IPLEDGE. By enrolling in this system, both your doctor and your pharmacy can ensure that your blood work has been checked/ reviewed each month and that you are aware of the side effects of the medication.
IPLEDGE has strict rules—you must have your blood work checked each month and you must be seen in office by your dermatologist each month. Our office cannot change those rules regardless of your specific case.
The day you are enrolled in IPLEDGE, you will sign a consent form that is contained in a booklet with pertinent isotretinoin information and side effects. Do not throw this book away. It contains your IPLEDGE registration number in addition to your yellow iPledge identification card that must be presented to the pharmacy each month when you fill your prescription.
You MUST have your blood work done prior to starting isotretinoin and then again, every 30 days. Each month (including the first month), you cannot pick up your prescription at the pharmacy until you have heard from our office that your bloodwork is normal.
Our office is part of the Newton Wellesley Hospital (NWH) system. Bloodwork results are automatically posted in our system when you have your labs done at NWH. We highly recommend you get your lab work done at NWH. Should you choose to have your lab work done elsewhere, it is essential that you have that lab fax us your bloodwork results at 781-369-9737 for review. It is your responsibility to make sure we receive it. Again, you cannot pick up your prescription until you have heard from our office that your lab tests were normal.
There is no way for Dreamlessly to know whether your specific insurance plan will require a prior authorization before allowing you to fill your prescription. Once your prescription arrives at the pharmacy, if your insurance requires a prior authorization, your pharmacy will fax our office additional paperwork. It may take several days for your insurance company to approve the medication. Please be patient with our office—we do our best to have the process move as fast as possible but have no ability to speed up the approval or override your insurance company policy.
Talk to Your Doctor
Finally, you and your doctor will review at the time of your visit the most common possible side effects of isotretinoin. Detailed information about all side effects are found in your iPledge booklet and we encourage you to read the booklet thoroughly. If at any time you are experiencing a side effect that you would like to speak with a doctor about, please do not hesitate to contact our office (we also have someone on call for emergencies 24 hours a day, 7 days a week). If you or your child is experiencing mood related changes, please stop the mediation and alert our office immediately or dial 911 if safety is at risk.
Unfortunately, because of the requirements of IPLEDGE program, our office CANNOT help you fill your prescription after normal business hours or on the weekend. If you are having trouble filling your prescription after hours or on the weekend, please call our office at 781-591-4234.