If you have depression, diabetic neuropathy pain, fibromyalgia, generalized anxiety disorder, or chronic pain, a healthcare provider may prescribe duloxetine. The medication works by increasing the levels of certain chemicals in the brain (serotonin and norepinephrine) and by blocking the nerve pain signals in the spinal cord or brain. Possible side effects of duloxetine include nausea, headaches, and dizziness. Prior to taking the medication, be sure to tell your healthcare provider if you have liver disease, any allergies, or bipolar disorder.
What Is Duloxetine?Duloxetine hydrochloride (Cymbalta®) is a prescription medicine used to treat the following conditions:
- Depression (also known as major depression or clinical depression)
- Peripheral diabetic neuropathy pain (nerve pain in the hands, feet, arms, or legs due to diabetes)
- Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
(Click What Is Duloxetine Used For? for more information on what it is used for, including possible off-label uses.)
Side Effects of DuloxetineAs with any medicine, there are possible side effects with duloxetine. However, not everyone who takes duloxetine will experience side effects. In fact, most people tolerate the medication well. When side effects do occur, in most cases they are minor and either require no treatment or can easily be treated by you or your healthcare provider. Serious side effects are less common.
The most common side effects of duloxetine include:
- Dry mouth (see Cymbalta and Dry Mouth)
- Insomnia (see Cymbalta and Insomnia).
(Click Duloxetine Side Effects to learn about specific side effects of the drug, including some of the more serious side effects that you should report to your healthcare provider. You can also read about possible side effects by going to:
- Cymbalta and Suicide
- Cymbalta and Weight Gain
- Cymbalta and Weight Loss
- Sexual Side Effects of Cymbalta.)