Cymbalta is an antidepressant in a group of drugs called selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SSNRIs). Cymbalta affects chemicals in the brain that may become unbalanced and cause depression.
Cymbalta is used to treat major depressive disorder and general anxiety disorder. It is also used to treat a chronic pain disorder called fibromyalgia, and to treat pain caused by nerve damage in people with diabetes (diabetic neuropathy).
The health and medical information provided here is for general purposes only and is not a substitute for the expertise and judgment of your physician, or other health care professional. It should not be understood to indicate that the use of this medicine is safe, appropriate or effective for you. Always consult your health care professional before using this, or any other, drug.
Do not take Cymbalta together with thioridazine (Mellaril), or a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam), or tranylcypromine (Parnate). You must wait at least 14 days after stopping an MAOI before you can take Cymbalta. After you stop taking Cymbalta, you must wait at least 5 days before you start taking an MAOI.
You may have thoughts about suicide when you first start taking an antidepressant, especially if you are younger than 24 years old. Your doctor will need to check you at regular visits for at least the first 12 weeks of treatment.
Call your doctor at once if you have any new or worsening symptoms such as: mood or behavior changes, anxiety, panic attacks, trouble sleeping, or if you feel impulsive, irritable, agitated, hostile, aggressive, restless, hyperactive (mentally or physically), more depressed, or have thoughts about suicide or hurting yourself. Avoid drinking alcohol while taking Cymbalta. Alcohol may increase the risk of damage to your liver.
Cold or allergy medicine, narcotic pain medicine, sleeping pills, muscle relaxers, and medicine for seizures or anxiety can add to sleepiness caused by Cymbalta. Tell your doctor if you regularly use any of these other medicines.
Cymbalta can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Cymbalta: skin rash or hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Call your doctor at once if you have any new or worsening symptoms such as: mood or behavior changes, anxiety, panic attacks, trouble sleeping, or if you feel impulsive, irritable, agitated, hostile, aggressive, restless, hyperactive (mentally or physically), more depressed, or have thoughts about suicide or hurting yourself.
Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects while using Cymbalta:
nausea, stomach pain, low fever, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
painful or difficult urination;
easy bruising or bleeding, nosebleeds;
black, bloody, or tarry stools;
very stiff (rigid) muscles, high fever, vomiting, diarrhea, sweating, fast or uneven heartbeats, tremors, overactive reflexes;
headache, trouble concentrating, memory problems, confusion, hallucinations; or
weakness, feeling unsteady, loss of coordination, fainting, seizure, shallow breathing or breathing that stops.
Less serious Cymbalta side effects may include:
dry mouth, blurred vision;
drowsiness, dizziness, spinning sensation;
mild nausea, constipation, gas;
sleep problems (insomnia);
joint or muscle pain;
weight changes; or
decreased sex drive, impotence, or difficulty having an orgasm.
Take Cymbalta 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 the medication.
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 the pill whole. It is specially made to release medicine slowly in the body. Breaking or opening the pill would cause too much of the drug to be released at one time. It may take 4 weeks or longer for your symptoms to improve. For best results, keep using the medication as directed. Do not stop using Cymbalta without first talking to your doctor. You may have unpleasant side effects if you stop taking this medication suddenly. Store Cymbalta at room temperature away from moisture and heat.