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Does Ingrezza cause weight gain?

Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on May 20, 2024.

Official answer


Weight gain has been reported in a 6-week clinical study with Ingrezza, but it is not a common side effect. Of 151 patients taking either the 40 mg/day or 80 mg/day dose, 3 patients had weight gain (2%) compared to zero patients (0%) in the placebo (inactive treatment) group.

Out of 72 patients who received the 40 mg/day dose, one patient (1.4%) had an increase in weight. In addition, two patients out of 79 (2.5%) who received the 80 mg/day dose experienced weight gain.

Your doctor may prescribe Ingrezza with other medicines, such as antipsychotic medications, that can lead to significant weight gain. Speak with your doctor if you are concerned about weight gain with your treatment regimen.

Why is Ingrezza prescribed?

Ingrezza (valbenazine) and Ingrezza Sprinkle are approved by the FDA to treat adults with tardive dyskinesia (TD) and chorea associated with Huntington's disease (HD), two conditions associated with involuntary muscle movements. Ingrezza is a highly selective vesicular monoamine transporter 2 (VMAT2) inhibitor.

Tardive dyskinesia is a disorder that causes movements that cannot be controlled in the face, tongue, or other body parts. It works by blocking certain chemicals in your body that may be involved with involuntary muscle movement.

Chorea associated with Huntington's disease (HD) is condition in which patients have involuntary, irregular and unpredictable movements that may affect walking, swallowing and speech. Ingrezza does not treat other symptoms of Huntington’s disease, such as thinking or emotional problems.

Is Ingrezza safe?

In general, Ingrezza is well-tolerated, with drowsiness and sleepiness that may affect reactions times listed as the most common side effect. In studies, a total of 3% of Ingrezza-treated patients and 2% of placebo-treated patients stopped treatment due to side effects.

The most common side effect reported with Ingrezza is somnolence (sleepiness) in 10.9% of patients, compared to 4.2% of patients taking a placebo. Other possible common side effects seen in patients with chorea associated with Huntington's disease are hives, rash, and trouble sleeping.

Due to the drowsiness side effect, do not drive, operate machinery, or do any hazardous activity that requires mental alertness until you know how Ingrezza affects you.

Related: Ingrezza warnings, precautions and side effects (in more detail)

Related Questions

How do I take Ingrezza capsules?

Ingrezza is taken by mouth once a day, with or without food. Your doctor will determine your specific dose.

Ingrezza capsule is swallowed by mouth with water, while the Ingrezza Sprinkle capsule can be swallowed OR the contents of the capsule can be sprinkled on a small amount of soft food and swallowed right away. Sprinkling on a small amount of food and swallowing may be easier for patients who trouble swallowing capssules.

If you take Ingrezza Sprinkle capsule:

  • Open the capsule and sprinkle the granules over a small amount (1 tablespoonful) of soft food such as applesauce, yogurt, or pudding and then swallow the soft food right away. Do not crush or chew Ingrezza Sprinkle or the granules inside the capsule or add the granules to milk or water.
  • Drink an 8 ounces glass of water (240 mL) to make sure that all of the medicine is swallowed.
  • You may store the soft food mixture for up to 2 hours at room temperature, if needed. Discard any unused portion after 2 hours.
  • You may also swallow the Ingrezza Sprinkle capsule whole with water (with or without food) if you prefer.

Your healthcare provider can provide you with detailed written instructions on how to take Ingrezza Sprinkle. If you are not sure, ask your pharmacist.

If you have liver disease, you may need a lower dose. Do not stop taking your medicine without speaking with your healthcare provider first.

Ingrezza and Ingrezza Sprinkle, from Neurocrine Biosciences, are available as a 40 mg, 60 mg and 80 mg capsules. It is available through a special pharmacy network in the U.S.

Related: Which pharmacies can dispense Ingrezza?

This is not all the information you need to know about Ingrezza (valbenazine) for safe and effective use and does not take the place of talking to your doctor about your treatment. Review the full Ingrezza information and discuss this information and any questions you have with your doctor or other health care provider.


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