Bromocriptine Capsules or Tablets

Bromocriptine is a medication that treats type 2 diabetes by decreasing your blood sugar. The brand name of this medication is Cycloset®. This medication comes in a tablet form that you can take by mouth with a glass of water as directed.

What is this medication?

BROMOCRIPTINE (broe moe KRIP teen) treats high prolactin levels in your body. Prolactin is a hormone that helps regulate the menstrual cycle and lactation. It may also be used to treat high levels of growth hormone (acromegaly). It works by lowering prolactin and growth hormone levels in your body. It can be used to treat the symptoms of Parkinson disease. It works by acting like dopamine, a substance in your body that helps manage movements and coordination.

This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Parlodel

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What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • Circulation problems in fingers and toes
  • Diabetes
  • Dementia
  • Heart disease
  • High or low blood pressure
  • Liver disease
  • Mental illness
  • Migraines with fainting
  • Narcolepsy
  • Seizures
  • Sleep apnea
  • Stomach or intestine problems
  • Stroke
  • An unusual or allergic reaction to bromocriptine, ergot alkaloids, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • Breast-feeding

How should I use this medication?

Take this medication by mouth with a glass of water. Take this medication with food. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medication more often than directed. Keep taking this medication unless your care team tells you to stop. Stopping it too quickly can cause serious side effects. It can also make your condition worse.

Talk to your care team about the use of this medication in children. While this medication may be prescribed for children as young as 11 years for selected conditions, precautions do apply.

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.

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What if I miss a dose?

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.

What may interact with this medication?

Do not take this medication with any of the following medications:

  • Ergot alkaloids like dihydroergotamine, ergonovine, ergotamine, methylergonovine

This medication may also interact with the following medications:

  • Alcohol
  • Antiviral medications for HIV or AIDS
  • Aspirin and aspirin-like medications
  • Certain antibiotics for infection like chloramphenicol, clarithromycin, erythromycin, sulfa antibiotics
  • Certain medications for fungal infections like ketoconazole and itraconazole
  • Certain medications for mental health conditions
  • Certain medications for migraine like almotriptan, eletriptan, frovatriptan, naratriptan, rizatriptan and sumatriptan
  • Certain medications for Parkinson's disease and related conditions like cabergoline, pramipexole, ropinirole
  • Grapefruit juice
  • Isometheptene
  • Metoclopramide
  • Phenylephrine
  • Pseudoephedrine
  • Probenecid
  • Rifampin
  • St. John's Wort
  • Stimulant medications for attention disorders, weight loss, or to stay awake

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.

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What should I watch for while using this medication?

Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. You may need blood work done while you are taking this medication.

Do not suddenly stop taking this medication. You may develop a severe reaction. Your care team will tell you how much medication to take. If your care team wants you to stop the medication, the dose may be slowly lowered over time to avoid any side effects.

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.

When taking this medication, you may fall asleep without notice. You may be doing activities like driving a car, talking, or eating. You may not feel drowsy before it happens. Contact your care team right away if this happens to you.

There have been reports of increased sexual urges or other strong urges such as gambling while taking this medication. If you experience any of these while taking this medication, you should report this to your care team as soon as possible.

This medication may affect blood sugar. Ask your care team if changes in diet or medications are needed if you have diabetes.

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.

Check your skin for changes to moles or for new growths while taking this medication. Call your care team if you notice any of these skin changes.

Women should inform their care team if they wish to become pregnant or think they might be pregnant. Talk to your care team for more information. Do not breast-feed an infant while taking this medication.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?

Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:

  • Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Falling asleep during daily activities
  • Hallucinations
  • Heart attack—pain or tightness in the chest, shoulders, arms, or jaw, nausea, shortness of breath, cold or clammy skin, feeling faint or lightheaded
  • Increase in blood pressure
  • Low blood pressure—dizziness, feeling faint or lightheaded, blurry vision
  • Peptic ulcer—burning stomach pain, loss of appetite, bloating, burping, heartburn, nausea, vomiting
  • Raynaud's—cool, numb, or painful fingers or toes that may change color from pale, to blue, to red
  • Seizures
  • Stroke—sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg, trouble speaking, confusion, trouble walking, loss of balance or coordination, dizziness, severe headache, change in vision
  • Urges to engage in impulsive behaviors such as gambling, binge eating, sexual activity, or shopping in ways that are unusual for you

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):

  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Feeling faint or lightheaded
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Runny or stuffy nose

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.

Where should I keep my medication?

Keep out of the reach of children and pets.

Store at room temperature between 20 and 25 degrees C (68 and 77 degrees F). Protect from light. Keep 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:

  • Take the medication to a medication take-back program. Check with your pharmacy or law enforcement to find a location.
  • If you cannot return the medication, check the label or package insert to see if the medication should be thrown out in the garbage or flushed down the toilet. If you are not sure, ask your care team. If it is safe to put it in the trash, empty the medication out of the container. Mix the medication with cat litter, dirt, coffee grounds, or other unwanted substance. Seal the mixture in a bag or container. Put it in the trash.

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.

Copyright ©2024 Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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Note: Introduction and Additional Common Questions written and medically approved by Cleveland Clinic professionals.

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