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Is Latuda a controlled substance?

Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on July 11, 2022.

Official answer


No, Latuda (generic name: lurasidone) is not classified as a controlled substance by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). Latuda is an atypical antipsychotic approved for patients with schizophrenia or bipolar depression. None of the atypical antipsychotics in the U.S. are classified as a controlled substance.

Latuda was not specifically studied for its potential to be abused or cause physical dependence. However, clinical studies conducted by the manufacturer for Latuda approval did not reveal any tendency for Latuda to cause drug-seeking behavior in patients.

Some treatments that work in the brain may be linked with abuse after FDA approval in certain patients, and it is difficult to always predict these effects. Patients taking Latuda should be carefully evaluated by their doctor for a history of drug abuse and followed closely, if warranted.

What is Latuda approved for?

  • Latuda is approved by the FDA for the treatment of adult and adolescent patients aged 13 to 17 years with schizophrenia.
  • Latuda is also approved for the treatment of bipolar depression (major depressive episode associated with bipolar I disorder) as a single treatment (monotherapy) in adults and children 10 to 17 years of age.
  • Latuda is also used in combination with lithium or valproate for the treatment of bipolar depression in adults.

How does Latuda work in schizophrenia or bipolar depression?

Latuda is not classified as an antidepressant. It is part of a group of medicines called atypical antipsychotics.

Atypical antipsychotics are thought to work by adjusting levels of various chemical messengers in the brain called neurotransmitters.

Neurotransmitters allow communication between nerve cells in the brain. Two specific neurotransmitters are dopamine and serotonin. Patients with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder may have too much or too little of these chemical messengers in their brains.

Lurasidone, the active ingredient in Latuda, may help to adjust neurotransmitter levels or their action to ease symptoms. However, the exact way that Latuda works in these conditions is not fully known.

Bottom Line

  • Latuda is not classified as a controlled substance. It is an atypical antipsychotic used in the treatment of bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.
  • Some drugs can be linked with drug abuse after FDA-approval, even though they are not predicted to be abused or do not have properties that lends themselves to drug abuse.
  • Health Care providers should assess all patients for a potential of abuse, and follow them regularly to assess any chance of misuse or tolerance.

This is not all the information you need to know about Latuda for safe and effective use. Review the full Latuda prescribing information here, and discuss this information with your doctor or other health care provider.


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