Antidepressant medications are used to treat a variety of conditions, including depression and other mental/mood disorders. These medications can help prevent suicidal thoughts/attempts and provide other important benefits. However, studies have shown that a small number of people (especially people younger than 25) who take antidepressants for any condition may experience worsening depression, other mental/mood symptoms, or suicidal thoughts/attempts. Therefore, it is very important to talk with the doctor about the risks and benefits of antidepressant medication (especially for people younger than 25), even if treatment is not for a mental/mood condition.
Tell the doctor right away if you notice worsening depression/other psychiatric conditions, unusual behavior changes (including possible suicidal thoughts/attempts), or other mental/mood changes (including new/worsening anxiety, panic attacks, trouble sleeping, irritability, hostile/angry feelings, impulsive actions, severe restlessness, very rapid speech). Be especially watchful for these symptoms when a new antidepressant is started or when the dose is changed.Who should not take mirtazapine?
Mirtazapine is used to treat depression. It improves mood and feelings of well-being. Mirtazapine is an antidepressant that works by restoring the balance of natural chemicals (neurotransmitters) in the brain.
Read the Medication Guide provided by your pharmacist before you start using mirtazapine and each time you get a refill because new information may be available. If you have any questions regarding the information, consult your doctor or pharmacist.
Take this medication by mouth, with or without food, usually once daily at bedtime or as directed by your doctor. The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to therapy, but should not exceed 45 milligrams per day.
With clean and dry hands, open the blister pack and place the tablet on your tongue. The tablet will quickly dissolve and can be swallowed with your saliva. Taking this medication with water or liquid is not necessary.
Do not break or crush the tablets. Do not remove any tablets from the original packaging until you are ready to take your dose. Doing so could decrease the effectiveness of this medication.
Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. Remember to use it at the same time each day. It may take between 1-4 weeks to notice improvement in your symptoms. Therefore, do not increase your dose or take it more often than prescribed.
It is important to continue taking this medication even if you feel well. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when the drug is abruptly stopped. Your dose may need to be gradually decreased.
Inform your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.
See also the Warning section.
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.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: swelling of the hands/feet, shaking (tremor), confusion, signs of infection (e.g., fever, persistent sore throat).
Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: fast/irregular heartbeat, severe dizziness, fainting, eye pain/swelling/redness, vision changes (such as seeing rainbows around lights at night, blurred vision).
This medication may increase serotonin and rarely cause a very serious condition called serotonin syndrome/toxicity. The risk increases if you are also taking other drugs that increase serotonin, so tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the drugs you take (see Drug Interactions section). Get medical help right away if you develop some of the following symptoms: fast heartbeat, hallucinations, loss of coordination, severe dizziness, severe nausea/vomiting/diarrhea, twitching muscles, unexplained fever, unusual agitation/restlessness.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: 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 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.
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 this medication, 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.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: history or family history of psychiatric disorders (e.g., bipolar/manic-depressive disorder), history or family history of suicide attempts, liver disease, kidney disease, seizures, high blood cholesterol or triglyceride levels, heart disease (e.g., recent heart attack, angina), stroke, severe loss of body fluids (dehydration), low blood pressure, personal or family history of glaucoma (angle-closure type).
Mirtazapine may cause a condition that affects the heart rhythm (QT prolongation). QT prolongation can rarely cause serious (rarely fatal) fast/irregular heartbeat and other symptoms (such as severe dizziness, fainting) that need medical attention right away.
The risk of QT prolongation may be increased if you have certain medical conditions or are taking other drugs that may cause QT prolongation. Before using mirtazapine, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the drugs you take and if you have any of the following conditions: certain heart problems (heart failure, slow heartbeat, QT prolongation in the EKG), family history of certain heart problems (QT prolongation in the EKG, sudden cardiac death).
Low levels of potassium or magnesium in the blood may also increase your risk of QT prolongation. This risk may increase if you use certain drugs (such as diuretics/"water pills") or if you have conditions such as severe sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting. Talk to your doctor about using mirtazapine safely.
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.
To minimize dizziness and lightheadedness, get up slowly when rising from a seated or lying position.
This medicine may contain aspartame. If you have phenylketonuria (PKU) or any other condition where you must restrict your intake of aspartame (or phenylalanine), consult your doctor or pharmacist regarding the safe use of this medicine.
Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially drowsiness and QT prolongation (see above).
This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. If this medication is used during the last 3 months of pregnancy, infrequently your newborn may develop symptoms including feeding or breathing difficulties, seizures, muscle stiffness, jitteriness or constant crying. Report any such symptoms to your doctor promptly. However, since untreated mental/mood disorders (such as depression) can be a serious condition, do not stop taking this medication unless your doctor directs you to do so. If you are planning pregnancy, become pregnant, or think you may be pregnant, immediately discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using this medication during pregnancy.
It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. 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.
Taking MAO inhibitors with this medication may cause a serious (possibly fatal) drug interaction. Avoid taking MAO inhibitors (isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue, moclobemide, phenelzine, procarbazine, rasagiline, selegiline, tranylcypromine) during treatment with this medication. Most MAO inhibitors should also not be taken for two weeks before and after treatment with this medication. Ask your doctor when to start or stop taking this medication.
The risk of serotonin syndrome/toxicity increases if you are also taking other drugs that increase serotonin. Examples include street drugs such as MDMA/"ecstasy," St. John's wort, certain antidepressants (including SSRIs such as fluoxetine/paroxetine, SNRIs such as duloxetine/venlafaxine), tryptophan, among others. The risk of serotonin syndrome/toxicity may be more likely when you start or increase the dose of these drugs.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking other products that cause drowsiness including alcohol, antihistamines (such as cetirizine, diphenhydramine), drugs for sleep or anxiety (such as alprazolam, diazepam, zolpidem), muscle relaxants (such as carisoprodol, cyclobenzaprine), and narcotic pain relievers (such as codeine, hydrocodone ).
Check the labels on all your medicines (such as allergy or cough-and-cold products) because they may contain ingredients that cause drowsiness. Ask your pharmacist about using those products safely.
If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room right away. 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 include: very fast/irregular heartbeat, severe dizziness, fainting.
Do not share this medication with others.
Psychiatric/medical checkups (and possibly laboratory tests) must be done periodically to monitor your progress and check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
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 at room temperature away from light and moisture. Keep the tablets in the original packaging until ready to use. Do not open up ahead of time and store in a different container. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
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.
Information last revised October 2015. Copyright(c) 2015 First Databank, Inc.
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