Cymbalta (Duloxetine HCl)




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What is Cymbalta used for?

Chemical Name DULOXETINE (doo-LOX-e-teen)

CYMBALTA is a prescription serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) medication effectively used for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD) and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) mental depression. It is also used for pain caused by nerve damage associated with diabetes, diabetic peripheral neuropathic pain, fibromyalgia and chronic musculoskeletal pain due to chronic osteoarthritis pain and chronic low back pain.

Some patients may think CYMBALTA can be used for stress urinary incontinence; however the FDA failed the approval due to concerns over liver toxicity and suicidal events. In contrast, it is approved for this purpose in Europe, where it is used as an


Take CYMBALTA exactly as directed by your health professional. It should be taken orally. Try to take it at the same time daily. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

  • Do not open, break or chew capsule; it must be swallowed whole
  • It can be taken with or without food
  • Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended
  • Continue using the medication as directed – do not adjust doses without consulting your health professional


Talk to your health professional about the following conditions to make sure you can safely take CYMBALTA:

  • liver or kidney disease
  • seizures or epilepsy
  • bleeding or blood clotting disorder
  • glaucoma
  • bipolar disorder (manic depression)
  • history of drug abuse or suicidal thoughts
  • use of any prescription, nonprescription and herbal medications
  • use of any NSAID pain relievers, aspirin, or blood thinners
  • about your alcohol use
  • your blood pressure
  • if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during therapy, or are breast-feeding

CYMBALTA may also increase chances of:

  • suicidal thoughts, especially in patients younger than 24 years old
  • mood changes
  • increased pressure on your eyes (narrow-angled glaucoma)
  • impaired thinking and/or reactions
  • bleeding when taken with other NSAID medications
  • complications in your pregnancy and breastfeeding
  • increased sensitivity to side effects for older patients
  • heightened blood pressure

CYMBALTA is not recommended for patients younger than 18 years old without the advice of a health professional.

The following should be avoided while taking CYMBALTA:

  • drinking alcohol as it may increase the risk of liver damage
  • operating heavy machinery
  • driving
  • any activity that requires you to be alert (until your body has adjusted to the medication)

Side Effects

As with all medications, CYMBALTA has side effects which range from moderate to serious.

Common side effects may include:

  • nausea
  • dry mouth
  • sleepiness
  • fatigue
  • constipation
  • dizziness
  • decreased appetite
  • increased sweating

Stop using CYMBALTA and call your health professional if you experience:

  • itching
  • right upper-belly pain
  • dark urine
  • yellow skin/eyes, or unexplained flu-like symptoms
  • severe liver problems
  • high fever or stiff muscles
  • skin blisters, serious or peeling rash, hives, mouth sores, or any other allergic reaction.
  • confusion, dizziness or fainting upon standing
  • difficulty concentrating, memory problems
  • problems with urine flow