8 USE IN SPECIFIC POPULATIONS
The available data from published case reports on eplerenone use during pregnancy are insufficient to establish a drug-associated risk of major birth defects, miscarriage, adverse maternal or fetal outcomes (see Clinical Considerations). In animal studies, no adverse developmental effects were observed when eplerenone was administered to pregnant rats and rabbits during organogenesis at exposures 32 and 31 times, respectively the human exposure at the 100 mg/day therapeutic dose.
The estimated background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage for the indicated population are unknown. In the US general population, the estimated background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage in clinically recognized pregnancies is 2–4% and 15–20%, respectively.
Disease-associated maternal and/or embryo/fetal risk
Hypertension in pregnancy increases the maternal risk for pre-eclampsia, gestational diabetes, premature delivery, and delivery complications (e.g., need for cesarean section, and post-partum hemorrhage). Hypertension increases the fetal risk for intrauterine growth restriction and intrauterine death. Pregnant women with hypertension should be carefully monitored and managed accordingly.
Pregnant women with heart failure are at increased risk for preterm birth. Stroke volume and heart rate increase during pregnancy, increasing cardiac output, especially during the first trimester. Clinical classification of heart disease may worsen with pregnancy and lead to maternal death. Closely monitor pregnant patients for destabilization of their heart failure.
Embryo-fetal development studies were conducted with doses up to 1000 mg/kg/day in rats and 300 mg/kg/day in rabbits (exposures up to 32 and 31 times the human AUC for the 100 mg/day therapeutic dose, respectively) administered during organogenesis. No teratogenic effects were seen in rats or rabbits, although decreased rat fetal weights were observed, and decreased body weight in maternal rabbits and increased rabbit fetal resorptions and post-implantation loss were observed at the highest administered dosages.
In a pre- and postnatal development study pregnant rats were administered eplerenone at doses up to 1000 mg/kg/day from Gestation Day 6 through Lactation Day 20. Decreased pup weights were observed beginning at birth at 1000 mg/kg/day.
There are no human data available on whether eplerenone is present in human milk, or has effects on breastfed infants or on milk production. Eplerenone was present in the milk of lactating rats. When a drug is present in animal milk, it is likely that the drug will be present in human milk.
8.3 Females and Males of Reproductive Potential
Based on animal data, use of eplerenone may compromise male fertility. In mature rats, male fertility was decreased with eplerenone exposure at 17 times the 100 mg/day human therapeutic dose. Reversibility of effects was not evaluated [see Nonclinical Toxicology (13.1)].
8.4 Pediatric Use
In a 10-week study of 304 hypertensive pediatric patients age 4 to 16 years treated with eplerenone up to 100 mg per day, doses that produced exposure similar to that in adults, eplerenone did not lower blood pressure effectively. In this study and in a 1-year pediatric safety study in 149 patients (age range 5 to 17 years), the incidence of reported adverse events was similar to that of adults.
Eplerenone has not been studied in hypertensive patients less than 4 years old because the study in older pediatric patients did not demonstrate effectiveness.
Eplerenone has not been studied in pediatric patients with heart failure.
8.5 Geriatric Use
Heart Failure Post-Myocardial Infarction
Of the total number of patients in EPHESUS, 3340 (50%) were 65 and over, while 1326 (20%) were 75 and over. Patients greater than 75 years did not appear to benefit from the use of eplerenone [see Clinical Studies (14.1)].
No differences in overall incidence of adverse events were observed between elderly and younger patients. However, due to age-related decreases in creatinine clearance, the incidence of laboratory-documented hyperkalemia was increased in patients 65 and older [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].
Of the total number of subjects in clinical hypertension studies of eplerenone, 1123 (23%) were 65 and over, while 212 (4%) were 75 and over. No overall differences in safety or effectiveness were observed between elderly subjects and younger subjects, however due to age-related decreases in creatine clearance, the risk of hyperkalemia may be increased [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].