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Duloxetine

Molecule Description

Duloxetine is a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor, i.e. increases the level of serotonin in the nervous system of the body.

Uses of Duloxetine

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Nerve pain or peripheral neuropathy in patients who suffer from diseases such as diabetes, fibromyalgia and arthritis

Contraindications of Duloxetine

When should one not use Duloxetine

  • Allergic reaction to Duloxetine
  • Antidepressants like Fluvoxamine
  • Antibiotics like Ciprofloxacin or Enoxacin
  • Any severe kidney, liver or heart problems like high blood pressure.

Side effects of Duloxetine

Common side effects of this drug are:

  • Nausea
  • Fatigue
  • Dry mouth
  • Sleepiness
  • Increased sweating
  • Loss of appetite
  • Constipation
  • Dizziness and headache
  • Liver damage
  • Serotonin syndrome
  • Vision problems
  • Hearing of abnormal sound in the ear (tinnitus)
  • Painful urination
  • Erectile problems
  • If you develop any unusual symptoms, consult a doctor immediately

Precautions and Warnings of Duloxetine

Pregnancy

Q:
Can I take Duloxetine during pregnancy?
A:
It should be used in pregnant women only if necessary as it may affect the baby. Ensure that you consult your doctor if you are planning a pregnancy or are pregnant.

Breast Feeding

Q:
Can I take Duloxetine while breastfeeding?
A:
It can be found in traces in breast milk. It has not shown to be harmful in any reports. Still, it is better to avoid this medicine during breastfeeding.

Driving

Q:
Can I drive if I have consumed Duloxetine?
A:
You shouldn’t drive any vehicle or operate heavy machinery when under the influence of this medicine as it induces drowsiness and can cause dizziness.

Alcohol

Q:
Can I consume alcohol with Duloxetine?
A:
You may continue to drink a small amount of alcohol while you are taking this medicine. However, excessive drinking may increase the symptoms of depression. Hence It is recommended not to drink alcohol.

Other General Warnings

Talk to your doctor if
  • If you are taking any depressant treatment
  • If you have any history of fits, eye diseases like glaucoma, bleeding tendencies
  • If you are taking Diuretics medicine for high blood pressure
  • It can severely increase the risk of having suicidal thoughts
  • It can cause drowsiness
  • It affects hormone (serotonin) levels in your brain causing confusion and agitation
  • It can increase the feeling of dizziness, especially when you stand up suddenly

Mode of Action of Duloxetine

How Does It Work?

Duloxetine helps you by improving your sleep, appetite, mood and energy levels. It will also help lower your nervousness. This medicine does this by restoring balance in the enzyme levels in the brain, particularly that of norepinephrine and serotonin.
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Interactions of Duloxetine

Interactions with other medicines

  • Duloxetine oral capsules may interact with other vitamins, medications or herbs you may be taking. An interaction is when a substance changes the way it works. This may be harmful or stop the medicine from working well
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  • Serotonergic medicines like Triptans, Tryptophan, Lithium
  • Schizophrenia medicine like Thioridazine
  • Non Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) like Ibuprofen
  • Anticoagulants (blood thinners) Clopidogrel, Warfarin

Interactions with food items

There are no reports that show the Duloxetine interaction with food. It can be taken with or without food.

Dosage of Duloxetine

Overdose

In case of an overdose of Duloxetine, immediately contact your doctor. In case of overdose, you may experience tiredness, vomiting, increased heart rate, seizures, high blood pressure and dizziness.

Missed a Dose

If you missed any dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is time for your next dose of medicine don’t take double dose, continue with prescribed dosage.

Content Details

WRITTEN BY
REVIEWED BY
doctor

Dr. Ritu Budania

MBBS, MD (Pharmacology)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

^

Q: How long does it take for the Duloxetine medicine to start working?

A: You will be able to see signs of improvement in energy, appetite and sleep within the first couple of weeks itself. These improvements are a good sign that the medication is working well. It will take about 6 to 8 weeks for depression and lack of interest in things to be cured.

Q: At what time of the day should you take Duloxetine?

A: It is highly recommended that you take medicine at the same time each day. People typically take it in the morning. However, if you feel that you may be drowsy throughout the day because of it, then you can take it in the evening as well. The capsules should be taken with a glass of water and swallowed whole.

Q: Is Duloxetine a painkiller?

A: It selectively inhibits the reuptake of norepinephrine and serotonin. It can be approved only with a prescription for chronic back pain and musculoskeletal pain, which is caused due to osteoarthritis.

Q: Can you take Ibuprofen along with Duloxetine?

A: Using this medicine with Ibuprofen has a high chance of causing bleeding. This interaction is more likely in the case of someone who has liver or kidney disease or if you are old.

Q: Does Duloxetine make you gain weight?

A: Studies have shown that weight gain doesn’t occur due to the medicine. Instead, you are more likely to lose weight.
Last Updated on: 05 Oct 2020 | 10:47 PM (IST)

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