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What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking protriptyline (Vivactil)?
Do not use this medication if you are allergic to protriptyline, or if you have recently had a heart attack.
Do not use protriptyline if you have taken cisapride (Propulsid) or used an MAO inhibitor such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) within the past 14 days. Serious, life-threatening side effects can occur if you take protriptyline before the MAO inhibitor has cleared from your body.
Before taking protriptyline, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:
If you have any of these conditions, you may not be able to use protriptyline, or you may need a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.
You may have thoughts about suicide when you first start taking an antidepressant, especially if you are younger than 24 years old. Tell your doctor if you have worsening symptoms of 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.
This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.
It is not known whether protriptyline passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Do not give this medication to anyone under 18 years old without the advice of a doctor.
How should I take protriptyline (Vivactil)?
Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results from this medication. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
If you need to have any type of surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time that you are taking protriptyline. You may need to stop using the medicine for a short time.
Do not stop using protriptyline without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely. Stopping this medication suddenly could cause you to have unpleasant side effects.
It may take a few weeks of using this medicine before your symptoms improve. For best results, keep using the medication as directed. Talk with your doctor if your symptoms do not improve during treatment with protriptyline.
Store protriptyline 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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