Phenelzine is a medication that treats depression. It increases levels of dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin in your brain to help regulate your mood. The brand name of this medication is Nardil®. You can take this tablet by mouth with a glass of water as directed.
PHENELZINE (FEN el zeen) treats depression. It is prescribed when other antidepressant medications have not worked. It works by increasing levels of dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin in your brain, substances that help regulate mood. It belongs to a group of medications called MAOIs.
This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Nardil
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They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
Take this medication by mouth with a glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Take your medication at regular intervals. Do not take your medication more often than directed. Do not stop taking this medication suddenly except upon the advice of your care team. Stopping this medication too quickly may cause serious side effects or your condition may worsen.
A special MedGuide will be given to you by the pharmacist with each prescription and refill. Be sure to read this information carefully each time.
Talk to your care team about the use of this medication in children. Special care may be needed.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
Do not take this medication with any of the following:
This medication may also interact with the following:
This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.
Tell your care team if your symptoms do not get better or if they get worse. Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. Because it may take several weeks to see the full effects of this medication, it is important to continue your treatment as prescribed by your care team.
This medication can interact with certain foods that contain tyramine. The combination may cause severe headaches, a rise in blood pressure, or irregular heart beat. Foods that contain significant amounts of tyramine include aged cheeses, meats and fish (especially aged, smoked, pickled, or processed such as bologna, pepperoni, salami, summer sausage), beer and ale, alcohol-free beer, wine (especially red), sherry, hard liquor, liqueurs, avocados, bananas, figs, raisins, soy sauce, miso soup, yeast/protein extracts, bean curd, fava or broad bean pods, or any over-ripe fruit. Ask your care team for a complete listing of tyramine-containing foods. Also, avoid drinks containing caffeine, such as tea, coffee, chocolate, or cola. After stopping this medication, ask your care team how long you should continue avoiding these foods and drinks.
Patients and their families should watch out for new or worsening thoughts of suicide or depression. Also watch out for sudden changes in feelings such as feeling anxious, agitated, panicky, irritable, hostile, aggressive, impulsive, severely restless, overly excited and hyperactive, or not being able to sleep. If this happens, especially at the beginning of treatment or after a change in dose, call your care team.
You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medication affects you. Do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. This reduces the risk of dizzy or fainting spells. Alcohol may interfere with the effect of this medication. Avoid alcoholic drinks.
This medication may cause dry eyes and blurred vision. If you wear contact lenses, you may feel some discomfort. Lubricating drops may help. See your care team if the problem does not go away or is severe.
Your mouth may get dry. Chewing sugarless gum or sucking hard candy, and drinking plenty of water may help. Contact your care team if the problem does not go away or is severe.
Do not treat yourself for coughs, colds, or allergies without asking your care team for advice. Do not take any medications for weight loss without your care team's approval. Some ingredients in these products may increase possible side effects.
This medication may affect blood sugar levels. If you have diabetes, check with your care team before you change your diet or the dose of your diabetic medication.
Tell your care team that you are taking this medication if you are scheduled to have any surgery, procedure or medical testing. You should usually stop taking this medication at least 10 days before elective surgery.
This medication may cause a decrease in vitamin B6. You should make sure that you get enough vitamin B6 while you are taking this medication. Discuss the foods you eat and the vitamins you take with your care team.
Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to care team if they continue or are bothersome):
This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Keep out of the reach of children and pets.
Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Keep the container tightly closed. Get rid of any unused medication after the expiration date.
To get rid of medications that are no longer needed or have expired:
NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.
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Note: Introduction and Frequently Asked Questions written and medically approved by Cleveland Clinic professionals.