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What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking duloxetine (Cymbalta)?
Do not use duloxetine together with thioridazine (Mellaril), or an MAO inhibitor such as furazolidone (Furoxone), isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam, Zelapar), or tranylcypromine (Parnate). A dangerous drug interaction could occur, leading to serious side effects. You must wait at least 14 days after stopping an MAO inhibitor before you can take duloxetine. After you stop taking duloxetine, you must wait at least 5 days before you start taking an MAOI.
Do not use this medication if you are allergic to duloxetine, or if you have untreated or uncontrolled glaucoma.
To make sure you can safely take duloxetine, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:
You may have thoughts about suicide while taking an antidepressant, especially if you are younger than 24 years old. Tell your doctor if you have worsening depression or suicidal thoughts during the first several weeks of treatment, or whenever your dose is changed.
Your family or other caregivers should also be alert to changes in your mood or symptoms. Your doctor will need to check you at regular visits for at least the first 12 weeks of treatment.
FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether duloxetine will harm an unborn baby. However, duloxetine may cause problems in a newborn if you take the medicine during the third trimester of pregnancy. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.
If you are pregnant, your name may be listed on a pregnancy registry. This is to track the outcome of the pregnancy and to evaluate any effects of duloxetine on the baby.
Duloxetine can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while taking this medication.
Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this medication.
Do not give duloxetine to anyone younger than 18 years old without the advice of a doctor.
How should I take duloxetine (Cymbalta)?
Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results.
Try to take the medicine at the same time each day. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
Do not crush, chew, break, or open a delayed-release capsule. Swallow it whole. Breaking or opening the pill may cause too much of the drug to be released at one time.
It may take 4 weeks or longer before your symptoms improve. Keep using the medication as directed. Do not stop using duloxetine without first talking to your doctor. You may have unpleasant side effects if you stop taking this medication suddenly.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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