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MAOI Antidepressants - Side Effects

Bipolar Medications Library


Updated August 06, 2006

MAOIs are a family of antidepressant medications. Due to their mechanism of action they can have dangerous side effects. See MAOI Antidepressants - Medication Family Profile and MAOIs and Diet for more information.

Stop taking medication and get emergency help immediately if you experience any of the following symptoms of a hypertensive crisis:

Severe chest pain; severe headache; stiff or sore neck; enlarged pupils; fast or slow heartbeat; increased sensitivity of eyes to light; increased sweating (possibly with fever or cold, clammy skin); nausea and vomiting.

Common Side Effects:

Check with your doctor if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome:

More Common: Blurred vision; decreased amount of urine; decreased sexual ability; mild dizziness or lightheadedness, especially when getting up from a lying or sitting position; drowsiness; mild headache; increased appetite (especially for sweets) or weight gain; increased sweating; muscle twitching during sleep; nausea; restlessness; shakiness or trembling; tiredness and weakness; trouble sleeping.

Less Common or Rare: Chills; constipation; decreased appetite; dryness of mouth.

Always Notify Doctor:

More Common: Severe dizziness or lightheadedness, especially when getting up from a lying or sitting position.

Less Common: Diarrhea; pounding or rapid heartbeat; swelling of feet or lower legs; unusual excitement or nervousness.

Rare: Dark urine; sore throat; skin rash; slurred speech; staggering walk; yellow eyes or skin; fever.

Overdose Effects - Notify Doctor / Seek Emergency Help:

May be more severe than side effects occurring at regular doses, or several may occur together:

Severe anxiety; confusion; convulsions (seizures); cool, clammy skin; severe dizziness; severe drowsiness; fast and irregular pulse; fever; hallucinations (seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not there); severe headache; high or low blood pressure; muscle stiffness; sweating; troubled breathing; significant trouble in sleeping; unusual irritability.

Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your doctor.

Disclaimer: This is not intended to be all-inclusive or to replace information provided by your doctor or with the prescription from the manufacturer.

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