Amitriptyline

Description

Amitriptyline is an effective medicine used for the prevention of migraine attacks. It can also be used to treat neuropathic pain (nerve pain that may be caused by nerve damage or chronic diseases such as diabetes) in adults. It is also used to treat depression in adult patients.

Side effects

Major & minor side effects for Amitriptyline

  • Headache
  • Nausea and Vomiting
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Blurred vision
  • Swelling of face, lips, eyelids, tongue, hands and feet
  • Unexpected weight gain or loss
  • Chest pain and discomfort
  • Shortness of breath
  • Weakness in one side of the body
  • Slurred speech
  • Seizures
  • Decreased sexual urge
  • Unusual bleeding

Uses of Amitriptyline

What is it prescribed for?

  • Migraine Prevention
  • Bed wetting
  • Neuropathic pain
  • Depression
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Concerns

Commonly asked questions

  • Onset of action
    The effect of this medicine can be observed within 3-6 weeks of administration.
  • Duration of effect
    The effect of this medicine lasts for an average duration of 4-7 weeks after onset of action.
  • Safe with alcohol?
    You should restrict or minimize the use of alcohol while taking this medicine. Symptoms like sleepiness, excessive sweating, muscle stiffness and change in pulse should be reported to the doctor on priority.
  • Is it habit forming?
    No habit forming tendency has been reported.
  • Usage in pregnancy?
    This medicine should be used by pregnant women only when the benefits outweigh the risk associated with usage. This medicine can cause harmful effects on fetus. Hence, you are advised to consult your doctor before taking this medicine.
  • Usage while breast-feeding?
    This medicine should not be used by women who are breastfeeding. If it is absolutely necessary to take this medicine then you should stop breastfeeding. Consult your doctor before using this medicine.

Allergy

This medicine is not recommended for use if you have a history of allergy to it or any other component of the medicine.

Monoamine oxidase inhibitors

This medicine is not recommended to use if you have taken Monoamine oxidase inhibitors within 14 days.

Cisapride

This medicine is not recommended for use along with Cisapride due to an increased risk of side effects on heart and blood vessels.

Heart attack

This medicine is not recommended for use if the patient is recovering from a recent heart attack.
Warnings for special population

Pregnancy

This medicine should be used by pregnant women only when the benefits outweigh the risk associated with usage. This medicine can cause harmful effects on fetus. Hence, you are advised to consult your doctor before taking this medicine.

Breast-feeding

This medicine should not be used by women who are breastfeeding. If it is absolutely necessary to take this medicine then you should stop breastfeeding. Consult your doctor before using this medicine.
General warnings

Sedation

Use of this medicine can cause moderate to severe sedation and impairment of physical abilities. You should avoid work that requires a high level of mental alertness while using this medicine.

Hypotension

This medicine should be used with the caution due to the risk of sudden fall in blood pressure.

Liver disease

This medicine should be used with caution if you are suffering from impaired liver functioning. Report all such conditions to the doctor before receiving this medicine.

Kidney disease

This medicine should be used with caution if you are suffering from impaired kidney function. Report all such conditions to the doctor before receiving this medicine.

Bipolar disorder

This medicine should be used with extreme caution in patients suffering from bipolar disorder. Symptoms of mania and depression can worsen upon usage of this medicine. Consult your doctor and report the incidence of bipolar depression or mania before receiving this medicine.

Suicidal tendencies

Use of this medicine is reported to provoke suicidal thoughts and increased suicidal tendencies, especially in young patients. Report any such incidence to the doctor so that counseling and monitoring of progress can be performed at regular intervals.

Benign prostatic hyperplasia

This medicine should be used with caution if you have an enlarged prostate gland. The symptoms might worsen after using this medicine.

Withdrawal symptoms

The use of this medicine should not be discontinued abruptly. You may experience withdrawal symptoms especially if you have been using a high dose for a long duration. Do not stop the use of this medicine without consulting your doctor.

Other medicine

This medicine is known to interact with many other medicines. Report the use of all the medicines including supplements and herbs to the doctor before starting to taking this medicine.

Surgery

Use of this medicine is not recommended if you are planning to undergo a surgery in near future. Consult your doctor in this regard so that it can be discontinued properly.

Missed Dose

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for the next scheduled dose then the missed dose should be skipped.

Overdose

Contact a doctor immediately if an overdose is suspected. Symptoms of overdose may include a change in pulse rates, severe drowsiness, confusion, vomiting, hallucinations, convulsions, and fainting. Immediate medical intervention may be required if the overdose symptoms are severe.
All drugs interact differently for person to person. You should check all the possible interactions with your doctor before starting any medicine.
Interaction with Alcohol

Description

Use of alcohol can change the response of Amitriptyline and can cause some serious side effects on the body.

Instructions

You should restrict or minimize the use of alcohol while taking this medicine. Symptoms like sleepiness, excessive sweating, muscle stiffness and change in pulse should be reported to the doctor on priority.
Interaction with Medicine

Cisapride

Clozapine

Fluoxetine

Linezolid

Ondansetron

Selegeline

Phenylephrine

Disease interactions

Heart Disease

This medicine should be used with caution in patients suffering from heart disease like heart failure, stroke, heart block etc. A fall in blood pressure, changes in the pulse, dizziness and other associated complications should be reported to the doctor. It is advised to not take this medicine if the patient has recently suffered a heart attack.

Pheochromocytoma

This medicine should be administered with extreme caution in patients suffering from Pheochromocytoma, the risk of severe to fatal change in blood pressure is very high. Suitable dose adjustment and clinical monitoring of the symptoms is recommended in such cases.

Seizure disorders

This medicine should be used with caution in patients having a seizure disorder. Seizures may be caused due to a disease, some other medicine, head injury in the past etc. Using this medicine can cause more frequent and severe episodes of seizures.

Diabetes

This medicine should be used with caution if you have diabetes as the risk of changes in blood sugar levels are very high. You should get your blood sugar levels checked more frequently while using this medicine.

Glaucoma

This medicine should be used with caution if you have glaucoma. Use of this medicine can worsen the symptoms of both closed and open-angle glaucoma.
Food interactions
Information not available.
Lab interactions
Information not available.
Take this medicine as instructed by the doctor. Follow all the labeled instructions while taking this medicine. Ensure that the right quantity of medicine is consumed for the prescribed duration only. Initial use may worsen the symptoms of depression and it may take up to 20-30 days for any improvement to happen. Usage should not be stopped abruptly.
Miscelleneous

Can be taken with or without food, as advised by your doctor

To be taken as instructed by doctor

Causes sleepiness

How it works
This medicine is believed to work by increasing the concentration of norepinephrine and serotonin which are the two primary chemical messengers in the brain.
Legal Status

Approved

Approved

Approved

Approved

Classification

Category

Tricyclic antidepressants

Schedule

Schedule H

Amitriptyline: MedlinePlus Drug Information [Internet]. Medlineplus.gov. 2017 [cited 21 March 2017]. Available from:

https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a682388.html

DailyMed - amitriptyline hydrochloride tablet, film coated [Internet]. Dailymed.nlm.nih.gov. 2017 [cited 21 March 2017]. Available from:

https://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/drugInfo.cfm?setid=1e6d2c80-fbc8-444e-bdd3-6a91fe1b95bd

Amitriptyline - DrugBank [Internet]. Drugbank.ca. 2017 [cited 25 October 2017]. Available from:

https://www.drugbank.ca/drugs/DB00321

Prescribing medicines in pregnancy database [Internet]. Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). 2017 [cited 25 October 2017]. Available from:

http://www.tga.gov.au/prescribing-medicines-pregnancy-database

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Information on this page was last updated on 25 Jun 2019

Disclaimer

We’ve made all possible efforts to ensure that the information provided here is accurate, up-to-date and complete, however, it should not be treated as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Practo only provides reference source for common information on medicines and does not guarantee its accuracy or exhaustiveness. The absence of a warning for any drug or combination thereof, should not be assumed to indicate that the drug or combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for any given patient. Practo does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information provided above. If you have any doubts about your medication then we strongly recommend that you consult with your doctor, nurse or healthcare provider. See detailed T&C here.