Cymbalta ®

Generic Name: Duloxetine hydrochloride

Drug Class: Antidepressant, SSNRI


Drug Uses

This medicine is a selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SSNRI). Cymbalta is used to treat depression. This medicine is also used for nerve pain (peripheral neuropathy) in diabetic patients. Your doctor may prescribe this medicine to treat other conditions.

General Information

This information is for educational purposes only. Not every known side effect, adverse effect, or drug interaction is in this database. If you have questions about your medicines, talk to your health care provider.

Proper Use of this Medication

Follow the directions printed on your prescription label. Ask you doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions about how to take this medicine. Cymbalta should be taken by mouth. This medicine should be swallowed whole and should not be chewed or crushed, nor should the contents be sprinkled on food or mixed with liquids. All of these might affect the enteric coating. Do not quickly stop this medicine without talking to your doctor.

Possible Side Effects

    • Talk to your doctor if these side effects are bothersome or do not go away:
      • nausea
      • drowsiness
      • dizziness
      • nervousness
      • insomnia
      • headache
      • increased sweating
      • lightheadedness
      • sexual problems

    • A few of the most common side effects with this medicine include:
      • nausea
      • dry mouth
      • constipation
      • fatigue
      • somnolence
      • increased sweating

    • If you experience other bothersome side effects, contact your health care provider.


    • Patients and their families should be alert to personality changes such as increased agitation or talk of suicide.
    • Do NOT stop taking this medicine without first talking to your doctor.
    • Alcoholic beverages can increase the effects of this medicine and should be avoided.
    • This medicine may cause drowsiness or dizziness.
    • Before taking this medicine, notify your doctor if you have:
      • history of alcohol abuse
      • narrow-angled glaucoma
      • kidney problems

    • Patient should watch for worsening depression or suicidal tendencies. If you are feeling more agitated, talk to your health care professional.
    • Be cautious when driving or performing other hazardous activities.


    • Seek medical attention immediately. For non emergencies, contact your local or regional poison control center at 1-800-222-1222.

Drug Interactions

    • Patients should be advised to inform their physicians if they are taking, or plan to take, any prescription or over-the-counter medications, since there is a potential for interactions.
    • If you are taking a group of medicine called "MAO inhibitors", they cannont be taken with this medicine. Stop the MAO inhibitor 14 days prior to starting this medicine. Your doctor or pharmacist can assist you with this.
    • Before taking any new medications, either prescription or over-the-counter (OTC), talk to your doctor or pharmacist about mixing medicines.
    • Avoid taking St. John's Wort with this medicine.

Missed Dose

Take your next dose as soon as you remember. If it is time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular schedule. Do not double doses.


Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture. Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed.


Patients should be advised to notify their physician if they become pregnant or intend to become pregnant during therapy. Neonates exposed to SSRIs or SNRIs late in the third trimester have developed complications requiring prolonged hospitalization. (1) Nursing is not recommended while taking this medicine.

More Information

For more information about this medicine, talk to your healthcare provider.

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 19 May 2015
    Published on All rights reserved.