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All about: Fluvoxamine

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Generic Name: Fluvoxamine (floo-VOX-a-meen)
Brand Name: Generic only. No brands available.

Antidepressants may increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or actions in children and teenagers. The risk may be greater during the first few months that patients take Fluvoxamine . Be sure that the benefits of using Fluvoxamine outweigh the risks. Talk with the patient's doctor if you have any questions.

Families and caregivers must closely observe patients who take Fluvoxamine . It is important to keep in close contact with the patient's doctor. Tell the doctor right away if the patient has symptoms like worsened depression, suicidal thoughts, or changes in behavior.


Fluvoxamine is used for:

Treating obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Fluvoxamine is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). It works by restoring the balance of serotonin, a natural substance in the brain, which helps to decrease obsessive or compulsive behavior.

Do NOT use Fluvoxamine if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Fluvoxamine
  • you are taking or have taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) (eg, phenelzine), selegiline, or St. John's wort within the last 14 days
  • you are taking alosetron, cisapride, a fenfluramine derivative (eg, dexfenfluramine), an H1 antagonist (eg, astemizole, terfenadine), nefazodone, pimozide, ramelteon, sibutramine, thioridazine, or tizanidine

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using Fluvoxamine :

Some medical conditions may interact with Fluvoxamine . Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you or a family member has a history of bipolar disorder (manic-depression), other mental or mood problems, suicidal thoughts or attempts, or alcohol or substance abuse
  • if you have a history of seizures, heart problems, liver problems, stomach or bowel bleeding, diabetes, blood or bone marrow problems, or metabolism problems
  • if you are dehydrated, have low blood sodium levels, or drink alcohol or smoke
  • if you will be having electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Fluvoxamine . Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Anorexiants (eg, phentermine), fenfluramine derivatives (eg, dexfenfluramine), linezolid, lithium, MAOIs (eg, phenelzine), medicines for mental problems (eg, quetiapine), metoclopramide, nefazodone, quinidine, selegiline, serotonin 5-HT1 receptor agonists (eg, sumatriptan), sibutramine, St. John's wort, trazodone, or tryptophan because severe side effects, such as a reaction that may include fever, rigid muscles, blood pressure changes, mental changes, confusion, irritability, agitation, delirium, and coma, may occur
  • Anticoagulants (eg, warfarin), aspirin, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) (eg, ibuprofen) because the risk of bleeding, including stomach bleeding, may be increased
  • Diuretics (eg, furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide) because the risk of low blood sodium levels may be increased
  • Tramadol because the risk of seizures may be increased
  • H1 antagonists (eg, astemizole, terfenadine), cisapride, phenothiazines (eg, chlorpromazine, thioridazine), or pimozide because severe heart problems, including irregular heartbeat, may occur
  • Cyproheptadine because it may decrease Fluvoxamine 's effectiveness
  • Alosetron, aripiprazole, benzodiazepines (eg, alprazolam, diazepam), beta-blockers (eg, metoprolol, propranolol), carbamazepine, clozapine, diltiazem, methadone, mexiletine, phenytoin, ramelteon, risperidone, serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (eg, venlafaxine), tacrine, theophylline, tizanidine, or tricyclic antidepressants (eg, amitriptyline) because the risk of their side effects may be increased by Fluvoxamine

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Fluvoxamine may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Fluvoxamine :

Use Fluvoxamine as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Fluvoxamine comes with an extra patient information sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it carefully. Read it again each time you get Fluvoxamine refilled.
  • Take Fluvoxamine by mouth with or without food.
  • Taking Fluvoxamine at the same time each day will help you remember to take it.
  • Continue to take Fluvoxamine even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
  • Do not suddenly stop taking Fluvoxamine without checking with your doctor. Side effects may occur. They may include mental or mood changes, numbness or tingling of the skin, dizziness, confusion, headache, trouble sleeping, or unusual tiredness. You will be closely monitored when you start Fluvoxamine and whenever a change in dose is made.
  • If you miss a dose of Fluvoxamine , take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Fluvoxamine .

Important safety information:

  • Fluvoxamine may cause drowsiness or dizziness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Fluvoxamine with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • Do not drink alcohol while you are using Fluvoxamine .
  • Check with your doctor before you use medicines that may cause drowsiness (eg, sleep aids, muscle relaxers) while you are using Fluvoxamine ; it may add to their effects. Ask your pharmacist if you have questions about which medicines may cause drowsiness.
  • Several weeks may pass before your symptoms improve. Do NOT take more than the recommended dose, change your dose, or use Fluvoxamine for longer than prescribed without checking with your doctor.
  • Children and teenagers who take Fluvoxamine may be at increased risk for suicidal thoughts or actions. Adults may also be affected. The risk may be greater in patients who have had suicidal thoughts or actions in the past. The risk may also be greater in patients who have had bipolar (manic-depressive) illness, or if a family member has had it. Watch patients who take Fluvoxamine closely. Contact the doctor at once if new, worsened, or sudden symptoms such as depressed mood; anxious, restless, or irritable behavior; panic attacks; or any unusual changes in mood or behavior occur. Contact the doctor right away if any signs of suicidal thoughts or actions occur.
  • If your doctor tells you to stop taking Fluvoxamine , you will need to wait for several weeks before beginning to take certain other medicines (eg, MAOIs, nefazodone). Ask your doctor when you should start to take your new medicines after you have stopped taking Fluvoxamine .
  • Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) is a possibly fatal syndrome that can rarely be caused by Fluvoxamine . Symptoms may include fever; stiff muscles; confusion; abnormal thinking; fast or irregular heartbeat; and sweating. Contact your doctor at once if you have any of these symptoms.
  • Fluvoxamine may rarely cause a prolonged, painful erection. This could happen even when you are not having sex. If this is not treated right away, it could lead to permanent sexual problems such as impotence. Contact your doctor right away if this happens.
  • Caution is advised when using Fluvoxamine in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially low blood sodium levels.
  • Caution is advised when using Fluvoxamine in CHILDREN; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially increased risk of suicidal thoughts or actions.
  • Fluvoxamine should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN younger than 8 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
  • Fluvoxamine may cause weight changes. CHILDREN and teenagers may need regular weight and growth checks while they take Fluvoxamine .
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: Fluvoxamine may cause harm to the fetus if it is used during the last 3 months of pregnancy. If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using Fluvoxamine while you are pregnant. Fluvoxamine is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Fluvoxamine .

Possible side effects of Fluvoxamine :

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Anxiety; constipation; diarrhea; dizziness; drowsiness; dry mouth; gas; headache; increased sweating; loss of appetite; nausea; nervousness; stomach upset; stuffy nose; taste changes; trouble sleeping; vomiting; weakness.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); bizarre behavior; black or bloody stools; chest pain; confusion; exaggerated reflexes; fainting; fast or irregular heartbeat; fever; hallucinations; memory loss; new or worsening agitation, panic attacks, aggressiveness, impulsiveness, irritability, hostility, exaggerated feeling of well-being, restlessness, or inability to sit still; painful menstrual periods; persistent, painful erection; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin; seizures; severe or persistent anxiety or trouble sleeping; stiff muscles; stomach pain; suicidal thoughts or attempts; tremor; unusual bruising or bleeding; unusual or severe mental or mood changes; unusual swelling; vision changes; worsening of depression.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions or need medical advice about side effects, contact your doctor or health care provider. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088) or at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center (http://www.aapcc.org/findyour.htm), or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include chest pain; coma; fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat; seizures; severe or persistent dizziness, drowsiness, diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting; tremor; trouble breathing.

Proper storage of Fluvoxamine :

Store Fluvoxamine at 77 degrees F (25 degrees C). Brief storage at temperatures between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C) is permitted. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Fluvoxamine out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Fluvoxamine , please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Fluvoxamine is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.

This information is summary only. It does not contain all information about Fluvoxamine . If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

Issue Date: September 5, 2007
Database Edition 07.3.1.003
Copyright © 2007 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

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