Generic name: Atomoxetine
Other brand names: Strattera
Atomoxetine is in a class of medications called
selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors. It works by increasing the
levels of norepinephrine, a natural substance in the brain.
How should this medicine be used?
Atomoxetine comes as a capsule to take by mouth. It is
usually taken with or without food either once a day in the morning, or
twice a day in the morning and late afternoon or early evening. To help
you remember to take atomoxetine, take it around the same time every day.
Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your
doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take
atomoxetine exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it
more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Your doctor will probably start you on a low dose of
atomoxetine and increase your dose after 3 days.
Atomoxetine controls ADHD but does not cure it. Do not
stop taking atomoxetine without talking to your doctor.
Before taking atomoxetine, ask your pharmacist or
doctor for a copy of the manufacturer's information for the patient and
read it carefully.
Other uses for this medicine
This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask
your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking atomoxetine,
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to atomoxetine
or any other medications.
- do not take atomoxetine if you are taking monoamine oxidase (MAO)
inhibitors, including phenelzine (Nardil) and tranylcypromine (Parnate),
or have stopped taking them within the past 2 weeks.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what other prescription and
nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and
herbal products you are taking. Be sure to mention any of the
following: albuterol syrup or tablets (Proventil, Ventolin),
amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone), bupropion (Wellbutrin), celecoxib (Celebrex),
chlorpromazine (Thorazine), cimetidine (Tagamet), clomipramine (Anafranil),
doxorubicin (Adriamycin), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem), metaproterenol
syrup or tablets (Metaprel), metoclopramide (Reglan), methadone (Dolophine),
paroxetine (Paxil), quinidine (Cardioquin, Quinaglute, Quinidex),
ranitidine (Zantac), ritonavir (Norvir), sertraline (Zoloft), and
terbinafine (Lamisil). Your doctor may need to change the doses of
your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects.
- tell your doctor if you have or have ever had glaucoma, high blood
pressure, rapid heart beat, a stroke, a mini-stroke, or heart or liver
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or
are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking atomoxetine,
call your doctor.
- you should know that atomoxetine may make you drowsy. Do not drive a
car or operate machinery until you know how this medication affects
- remember that alcohol can add to the drowsiness caused by this
- you should know that atomoxetine may cause dizziness,
lightheadedness, and fainting when you get up too quickly from a lying
position. To avoid this problem, get out of bed slowly, resting your
feet on the floor for a few minutes before standing up.
- you should know that atomoxetine should be used as part of a total
treatment program for ADHD, which may include counseling and special
education. Make sure to follow all of your doctor's and/or therapist's
What side effects can this medication cause?
Atomoxetine may cause side effects. Tell your doctor
if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- upset stomach
- loss of appetite
- stomach pain
- dry mouth
- excessive tiredness
- difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
- mood swings
- weight loss
- decreased sex drive or ability
- difficulty urinating
- painful menstrual periods
- runny nose
- violent behavior
- muscle pain
- hot flashes
Some side effects can be serious. The following
symptoms are uncommon, but if you experience any of them, call your doctor
- pounding heartbeat
- swelling of the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet,
ankles, or lower legs
- difficulty swallowing or breathing
Atomoxetine may slow down children's growth or weight
gain. Talk to your child's doctor about the risks of taking this
Atomoxetine may cause other side effects. Call your
doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
Found on MedLinePlus (National Library of Medicine
& National Institute of Health).
methylphenidate is viewed as having a very high potential for abuse
and is listed in Schedule II of the Psychotropic Convention.
Under treaty obligations, the United States must provide the
United Nations with data on the production, distribution and
consumption of methylphenidate.
Methylphenidate is the only psychoactive substance listed in
Schedule II under international treaty whose worldwide medical use
According to the 1993 United Nations Report on Psychoactive
Substances, the worldwide medical use of methylphenidate has
increased from less than 3 tons in 1990, to more than 6 tons in
This global trend largely reflects increased consumption of
methylphenidate in the United States.
United Nations International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) has, on
two recent occasions, written letters to U.S. officials expressing
their concern about the sharp increase in the use of methylphenidate
in the United States and have requested data on the legal
requirements for the use of methylphenidate (i.e. prescription in
accordance with sound medical practice – Article 9 of the 1971
Convention) as well as data concerning trends in abuse and possible
diversion from licit sources".
The Drug Enforcement