Trazodone (By mouth)


Trazodone (TRAZ-oh-done)
Treats depression, and depression with anxiety.

Brand Name(s)

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

Desyrel Dividose, Desyrel, Oleptro

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to trazodone.

How to Use This Medicine

Tablet, Long Acting Tablet
  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Your dose may need to be changed several times in order to find out what works best for you. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • It is best to take this medicine with food or milk. If you are using the extended-release tablet, it is best to take this medicine on an empty stomach.
  • The tablets can be swallowed whole or given as a half tablet by breaking the tablet along the score line. Do not break the tablets unless your doctor tells you to. Do not crush or chew the tablets.
  • This medicine should come with a Medication Guide. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions. Ask your pharmacist for the Medication Guide if you do not have one. Your doctor might ask you to sign some forms to show that you understand this information.
If a dose is missed:
  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any leftover medicine after you have finished your treatment. You will also need to throw away old medicine after the expiration date has passed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are taking digoxin (Lanoxin®), phenytoin (Dilantin®), or medicines that could make you drowsy such as sleeping pills, tranquilizers, other medicine for depression, cold or allergy medicine, or narcotic pain killers.
  • Tell your doctor if you are using carbamazepine (Tegretol®), medicine for HIV or AIDS (such as ritonavir, indinavir, Crixivan®, or Norvir®), or medicine to treat a fungal infection (such as fluconazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole, Diflucan®, Nizoral®, or Sporanox®).
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using a diuretic or "water pill" (such as furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide [HCTZ], or Lasix®) or blood pressure medicine (such as atenolol, lisinopril, metoprolol, Accupril®, Cozaar®, Diovan®, Lotrel®, Norvasc®, Prinivil®, Toprol®, or Zestril®). Tell your doctor if you are using pain or arthritis medicine, also called NSAIDs (such as aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, Aleve®, Celebrex®, or Motrin®) or a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin®).
  • Tell your doctor if you have used an MAO inhibitor (MAOI) such as Eldepryl®, Marplan®, Nardil®, or Parnate® within the past 14 days.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are using other medicines for depression (such as amitriptyline, doxepin, fluoxetine, nefazodone, nortriptyline, paroxetine, Celexa®, Effexor®, Elavil®, Lexapro?, Pamelor®, Paxil®, Sinequan®, or Zoloft®) or medicine to treat migraine headaches (such as rizatriptan, sumatriptan, zolmitriptan, Imitrex®, Maxalt®, or Zomig®).
  • Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have bipolar disorder (manic-depressive disorder), kidney disease, liver disease, bleeding problems, heart disease, heart rhythm problems (such as QT prolongation), low blood pressure, or low sodium in the blood. Tell your doctor if you have recently had a heart attack or have ever suffered from a painful or prolonged erection of the penis (priapism).
  • For some children and teenagers, this medicine can increase thoughts of suicide. All of the warnings in this leaflet are true for a child or teenager who is using this medicine. Tell your doctor right away if you start to feel more depressed. Also tell your doctor right away if you have thoughts about hurting yourself. Report any unusual thoughts or behaviors that trouble you, especially if they are new or get worse quickly. Make sure your caregiver knows if you have trouble sleeping, get upset easily, have a big increase in energy, or start to act reckless. Also tell your doctor if you have sudden or strong feelings, such as feeling nervous, angry, restless, violent, or scared. Let your doctor know if you or anyone in your family has bipolar disorder (manic-depressive) or has tried to commit suicide.
  • Make sure your doctor knows about all the other medicines you are using. This medicine may cause two serious conditions called serotonin syndrome and neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS)-like reactions when taken with certain medicines that are also used for depression, mental conditions, or migraines. Check with your doctor first before taking any other medicines. Stop taking this medicine and tell your doctor right away if you have more than one of the following symptoms: agitation; confusion; diarrhea; difficulty with breathing; a fast heartbeat; a high fever; high or low blood pressure; loss of bladder control; muscle twitching; overactive reflexes; poor coordination; restlessness; seizures; severe muscle stiffness; shivering; sweating; talking or acting with excitement; trembling or shaking that you are unable to control; unusually pale skin; or tiredness.
  • This medicine can cause changes in the heart rhythm, such as a condition called QT prolongation. It may change the way your heart beats, and cause fainting or serious side effects in some patients. Contact your doctor right away if you have any symptoms of heart rhythm problems, such as fast, pounding, or irregular heartbeats.
  • Dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting may occur, especially when you get up suddenly from a lying or sitting position. Getting up slowly may also help. If this problem continues or gets worse, check with your doctor.
  • Do not stop using this medicine suddenly without asking your doctor. You may need to slowly decrease your dose before stopping it completely.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert.
  • Before having any kind of surgery, dental treatment, or emergency treatment, tell the medical doctor or dentist in charge that you are using this medicine. Taking this medicine together with anesthetic medicines (numbing medicines) that are used during surgery may cause you to be more drowsy or less alert.
  • Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
  • Confusion, weakness, or muscle twitching.
  • Fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeat.
  • Lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting.
  • Painful, prolonged erection of your penis.
  • Thoughts of hurting or killing oneself.
  • Unexplained fever or sore throat.
  • Unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
  • Blurred vision or changes in vision (such as trouble focusing).
  • Constipation, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, or upset stomach.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Headache.
  • Skin rash.
  • Sleepiness or unusual drowsiness.
  • Trouble sleeping.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088
Review Date: 2011-02-04 Reviewed By: Keywords: ,
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