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All about: diethylpropion

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Generic Name: diethylpropion (dye eth ill PROE pee on)
Brand Names: Tenuate, Tenuate Dospan

What is diethylpropion?

Diethylpropion is a sympathomimetic amine, which is similar to an amphetamine. It is also known as an "anorectic" or an "anorexigenic" drug. Diethylpropion stimulates the central nervous system (nerves and brain), which increases your heart rate and blood pressure and decreases your appetite.

Diethylpropion is used as a short-term supplement to diet and exercise in the treatment of obesity.

Diethylpropion may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about diethylpropion?

Use caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other hazardous activities. Diethylpropion may cause dizziness, blurred vision, or restlessness, and it may hide the symptoms of extreme tiredness. If you experience these effects, avoid hazardous activities. Diethylpropion is habit forming. You can become physically and psychologically dependent on this medication, and withdrawal effects may occur if you stop taking it suddenly after several weeks of continuous use. Talk to your doctor about stopping this medication gradually. Do not crush, chew, or open any "once-daily" diethylpropion tablets or capsules. Swallow them whole.

Who should not take diethylpropion?

You cannot take diethylpropion if you
  • have heart disease or high blood pressure;

  • have arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries);

  • have glaucoma;

  • have taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), tranylcypromine (Parnate), or phenelzine (Nardil) in the last 14 days; or

  • have a history of drug or alcohol abuse.

Before taking this medication, tell your doctor if you have

  • problems with your thyroid,

  • an anxiety disorder,

  • epilepsy or another seizure disorder, or

  • diabetes.

You may not be able to take diethylpropion, or you may require a lower dose or special monitoring during treatment if you have any of the conditions listed above.

Diethylpropion is in the FDA pregnancy category B. This means that it is not expected to harm an unborn baby. Do not take diethylpropion without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant. Diethylpropion passes into breast milk and may affect a nursing baby. Do not take diethylpropion without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take diethylpropion?

Take diethylpropion exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these directions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.

Take each dose with a full glass of water. Take diethylpropion on an empty stomach 1 hour before meals. An evening dose may be taken to overcome nighttime hunger.

Diethylpropion is usually taken three times a day (regular-release formula). Follow your doctor's instructions.

The sustained-release formulation is usually taken once a day in the midmorning.

Do not crush, chew or open any "once-daily" (long-acting or sustained-release) diethylpropion tablets or capsules. Swallow them whole. Never take more of this medication than is prescribed for you. Too much diethylpropion could be very dangerous to your health. Store diethylpropion at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose or if it is already evening, skip the missed dose and take only your next regularly scheduled dose. A dose taken too late in the day will cause insomnia. Do not take a double dose of this medication.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention.

Symptoms of a diethylpropion overdose include restlessness, tremor, rapid breathing, confusion, hallucinations, panic, aggressiveness, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, an irregular heartbeat, and seizures.

What should I avoid while taking diethylpropion?

Use caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other hazardous activities. Diethylpropion may cause dizziness, blurred vision, or restlessness, and it may hide the symptoms of extreme tiredness. If you experience these effects, avoid hazardous activities.

Diethylpropion side effects

If you experience any of the following serious side effects, stop taking diethylpropion and seek emergency medical attention:
  • an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives);

  • an irregular heartbeat or very high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision); or

  • hallucinations, abnormal behavior, or confusion.

Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue to take diethylpropion and talk to your doctor if you experience

  • restlessness or tremor,

  • nervousness or anxiety,

  • headache or dizziness,

  • insomnia,

  • dry mouth or an unpleasant taste in your mouth,

  • diarrhea or constipation, or

  • impotence or changes in your sex drive.

Diethylpropion is habit forming. You can become physically and psychologically dependent on this medication, and withdrawal effects may occur if you stop taking it suddenly after several weeks of continuous use. Talk to your doctor about stopping this medication gradually.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

What other drugs will affect diethylpropion?

You cannot take diethylpropion if you have taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), tranylcypromine (Parnate), or phenelzine (Nardil) in the last 14 days.

Changes in insulin and other diabetes drug therapies may be necessary during treatment with diethylpropion.

Diethylpropion may reduce the effects of guanethidine (Ismelin). This could lead to an increase in blood pressure. Tell your doctor if you are taking guanethidine.

Before taking this medication, tell your doctor if you are taking a tricyclic antidepressant such as amitriptyline (Elavil), amoxapine (Asendin), doxepin (Sinequan), nortriptyline (Pamelor), imipramine (Tofranil), clomipramine (Anafranil), protriptyline (Vivactil), or desipramine (Norpramin). These drugs may decrease the effects of diethylpropion.

Drugs other than those listed here may also interact with diethylpropion. Talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any prescription or over-the-counter medicines.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist has more information about diethylpropion written for health professionals that you may read.

What does my medication look like?

Diethylpropion is available with a prescription under the brand name Tenuate. Other brand or generic formulations may also be available. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about this medication, especially if it is new to you.

  • Tenuate 25 mg--white, round tablets

  • Tenuate Dospan Sustained Release 75 mg--white, capsule-shaped tablets

  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2006 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 2.04. Revision Date: 2/19/03 4:27:10 PM.

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