This medication is used with levodopa/carbidopa to treat movement disorders caused by Parkinson's disease. It does not cure Parkinson's disease, but it may improve shakiness (tremor), muscle stiffness, and sudden switching between normal movement and stiffness ("on-off" problems). It may improve your range of motion and ability to walk, dress, and exercise.
Selegiline is an enzyme blocker (MAO inhibitor) that works by slowing the breakdown of certain natural substances in the brain (neurotransmitters such as dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin).
Take this medication by dissolving the tablet on the tongue, usually once a day in the morning or as directed by your doctor. Do not swallow the tablet or the dissolved medication with saliva or water. It should be absorbed through the lining of the mouth. To prevent accidentally swallowing any of the medication, do not eat or drink anything for at least 5 minutes before or after using this product.
Dry your hands before peeling back the foil on the blister pack to carefully remove a tablet. Do not push the tablet through the foil. Immediately place the tablet on the tongue and allow it to dissolve completely. Do not crush, split, or break the tablet before taking it. Do not remove the tablet from the blister pack until just before taking. Taking selegiline late in the day may cause trouble sleeping.
Dosage is based on your medical condition and response to therapy. Your doctor may change your dose to find the best dose for you. The usual highest dose is 2.5 milligrams a day. Do not increase your dose or take it more often than directed.
Your doctor may direct you to lower your levodopa dose if you are having more side effects while using selegiline. Follow your doctor's instructions closely. Do not stop or change the dose of any of your medications without first talking with your doctor.
Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, use it at the same time each day.
Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when the drug is suddenly stopped. Your dose may need to be gradually decreased.
It may take a few weeks for the full benefits of the drug to be noticed. Talk with your doctor if the medication stops working well or if your condition worsens.
Dizziness, abdominal pain, dry mouth, nausea, stomach upset, trouble sleeping, and headache may occur. Redness, pain, and swelling of the mouth/throat may also occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
If you are also taking levodopa, you may experience more side effects from the levodopa when taking selegiline. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these side effects occur: nausea, shakiness, muscle stiffness, mental/mood changes such as hallucinations/abnormal dreams. Your doctor may need to change your medication or dose. Do not stop or change the dose of your levodopa without talking with your doctor first.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Some people taking selegiline have fallen asleep suddenly during their usual daily activities (such as talking on the phone, driving). In some cases, sleep occurred without any feelings of drowsiness beforehand. This sleep effect may occur anytime during treatment with selegiline, including up to 1 year after starting the medication. If you experience increased sleepiness or fall asleep during the day, do not drive or take part in other possibly dangerous activities until you have discussed this effect with your doctor. Your risk of this sleep effect is increased by using alcohol or other medications that can make you drowsy. See also Precautions section.
Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: fainting, loss of balance, mental/mood changes (e.g., agitation, confusion, depression, hallucinations), unusual strong urges (such as increased gambling, increased sexual urges), worsening muscle stiffness/twitching, changes in sexual ability/interest, increased shaking (tremor), swollen ankles/legs, difficulty urinating, unusual weight gain.
Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: easy bleeding/bruising, black/tarry stools, vomit that looks like coffee grounds.
This drug may rarely cause an attack of extremely high blood pressure (hypertensive crisis), which may be fatal. Many drug and food interactions can increase this risk. (See also Drug Interactions section.) Seek immediate medical attention if any of these serious side effects occur: frequent/severe headache, fast/slow/irregular/pounding heartbeat, chest pain, neck stiffness/soreness, severe nausea/vomiting, sweating/clammy skin (sometimes with fever), widened pupils, vision changes (e.g., double/blurred vision), sudden sensitivity to light (photophobia).
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Before taking selegiline, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: a certain kind of adrenal gland tumor (pheochromocytoma), cerebrovascular disease (e.g., stroke), heart problems (e.g., congestive heart failure, heart attack), high blood pressure, history of severe/frequent headaches, peptic ulcer.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: bleeding problems, diabetes, personal/family history of mental/mood disorders (e.g., schizophrenia, bipolar disorder), family history of high blood pressure, heart disease (e.g., coronary artery disease, history of chest pain), kidney disease, liver disease, history of peptic ulcer, overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism).
This drug may make you dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. See also Side Effects section.
To minimize dizziness and the risk of fainting, get up slowly when rising from a sitting or lying position.
Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist you are taking this medication. You may need to stop taking this drug beforehand. Follow your doctor's instructions carefully.
This medicine may contain aspartame. If you have phenylketonuria (PKU) or any other condition that requires you to restrict your intake of aspartame (or phenylalanine), consult your doctor or pharmacist about using this drug safely.
The elderly may be more sensitive to the effects of this drug, especially dizziness from low blood pressure.
During pregnancy, selegiline should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
It is unknown if this drug passes into breast milk, but it may have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.
Some products that may interact with selegiline include: antidepressants (including bupropion, maprotiline, mirtazapine, TCAs such as amitriptyline/doxepin, SSRIs such as fluoxetine/paroxetine, SNRIs such as duloxetine/venlafaxine), other MAO inhibitors (isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue, moclobemide, phenelzine, procarbazine, rasagiline, tranylcypromine), appetite suppressants (such as diethylpropion), drugs for attention deficit disorder (such as atomoxetine, methylphenidate), apraclonidine, buspirone, carbamazepine/oxcarbazepine, cyclobenzaprine, dextromethorphan, certain herbal products (such as ephedra/ma huang, St. John's wort), cold medications/nasal decongestants (such as phenylephrine, phenylpropanolamine, pseudoephedrine), certain narcotic medications (such as fentanyl, meperidine, methadone, propoxyphene, tapentadol), street drugs (such as MDMA/"ecstasy", LSD, mescaline), stimulants (such as amphetamines, ephedrine), supplements (such as tryptophan, tyramine), tetrabenazine, tramadol, certain "triptans" used to treat migraine headaches (such as rizatriptan, sumatriptan, zolmitriptan).
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are using any of these medications before, during, or within 2 weeks after treatment with selegiline. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have taken fluoxetine during at least 5 weeks before starting selegiline. Discuss with your doctor how much time to wait between starting or stopping any of these drugs and taking selegiline.
Check the labels on all your medicines (such as allergy, cough-and-cold products, diet pills) because they may contain dextromethorphan, decongestants, or stimulants. Ask your pharmacist about the safe use of those products.
To prevent a very serious high blood pressure reaction, it is very important that you do not increase your dose. Follow any special diet your doctor or dietician recommends in order to limit your intake of tyramine while you are taking this medicine. If your doctor recommends a special diet, foods and beverages that are high in tyramine include: aged cheeses (e.g., bleu, cheddar, parmesan), dried/aged/fermented meats and sausages (e.g., salami, liverwurst), preserved fish (e.g., pickled herring), products containing large amounts of yeast (e.g., concentrated yeast extract, bouillon cubes, powdered soup/gravy, homemade or sourdough bread), fermented foods (e.g., sauerkraut, kim chee), most soybean products (e.g., soy sauce, tofu), broad/fava beans, red wine, sherry, tap beers, vermouth. Foods that are moderate in tyramine include: avocados, bananas, eggplant, green beans, raisins, raspberries, red plums, spinach, tomatoes, chocolate, cultured dairy products (e.g., buttermilk, yogurt, sour cream), fish eggs, pate, peanuts, coffee, cola, alcohol-free beer, bottled beer, distilled spirits, port, white wine. Consult your doctor or dietician for more details and a complete list of other tyramine-containing foods. Seek immediate medical attention if you notice symptoms of very high blood pressure such as unusually fast/slow heartbeat, vomiting, unexplained sweating, headache, chest pain, sudden vision changes, weakness on one side of the body, slurred speech.
This medication may interfere with certain medical/laboratory tests (including brain scan for Parkinson's disease), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.
If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may not appear for up to 12 hours and may include: restlessness, weakness, drowsiness, flushing, sweating, fast heartbeat, confusion, seizures. You may need to follow a tyramine-restricted diet for several weeks after a suspected overdose.
Do not share this medication with others.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., blood pressure) should be performed periodically to monitor your progress and check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
People with Parkinson's disease may have an increased risk for developing skin cancer (melanoma). Tell your doctor promptly if you notice a change in the appearance or size of moles or other unusual skin changes. Ask your doctor if you should have regular skin exams.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store the blister packets in the pouch provided. Store at room temperature at 77 degrees F (25 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Brief storage between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) is permitted. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
Discard any remaining tablets in the blister packets 3 months after opening the pouch . The medication may no longer work 3 months after the pouch is first opened.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.
Information last revised October 2014. Copyright(c) 2014 First Databank, Inc.
With WebMD's Medicine Cabinet, you can check interactions with drugs.Go to medicine cabinet