Generic Name: sibutramine (si BUE tra meen)Brand Names: Meridia
Sibutramine affects chemicals in the brain that affect weight maintenance.
Sibutramine is used together with diet and exercise to treat obesity that may be related to diabetes, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure.
Sibutramine may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Before taking sibutramine, tell your doctor if you have glaucoma, high blood pressure, liver or kidney disease, depression, underactive thyroid, seizures, a bleeding disorder, a history of gallstones, or if you are older than 65 or younger than 16.
Tell your doctor about all prescription and over-the-counter medications you use, especially antidepressants, cold or allergy medication, narcotic pain medicine, or migraine headache medicines.Tell your doctor if you do not lose at least 4 pounds after taking the medication for 4 weeks along with a low calorie diet.
severe or uncontrolled hypertension (high blood pressure);
an eating disorder (anorexia or bulimia);
a history of coronary artery disease (atherosclerosis);
a history of heart disease (congestive heart failure, heart rhythm disorder);
a history of heart attack or stroke; or
if you are taking stimulant diet pills.
If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a sibutramine dose adjustment or special tests:
high blood pressure;
epilepsy or seizure disorder;
a bleeding or blood clotting disorder;
a history of gallstones; or
if you are older than 65 or younger than 16.
Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
Sibutramine is usually taken once daily. Follow your doctor's instructions.
Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results.
Sibutramine can be taken with or without food.You should lose at least 4 pounds during the first 4 weeks of taking sibutramine and eating a low calorie diet. Tell your doctor if you do not lose at least 4 pounds after taking the medication for 4 weeks.
Your blood pressure and pulse will need to be checked often. Visit your doctor regularly.
Sibutramine should not be taken for longer than 2 years.Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light. Do not share sibutramine with another person. Keep the medication in a place where others cannot get to it.
See also: Sibutramine dosage in more detail
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
Overdose symptoms may include headache, dizziness, and fast heart rate.
Avoid taking cough and cold or allergy medications while taking sibutramine.Avoid drinking alcohol while taking sibutramine.
fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeats;
new or worsening shortness of breath;
agitation, hallucinations, fever, tremor, overactive reflexes, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of coordination, dilated pupils;
very stiff (rigid) muscles, high fever, sweating, confusion, feeling like you might pass out;
easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums, or any bleeding that will not stop);
dangerously high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, seizure);
chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, general ill feeling; or
sudden numbness or weakness (especially on one side of the body), problems with vision, speech, or balance.
Less serious side effects may include:
dry mouth, upset stomach;
changes in appetite;
constipation, stomach pain;
headache, back pain, joint pain;
feeling nervous, dizzy, or depressed;
flu symptoms, runny or stuffy nose, sore throat, cough;
warmth, redness, or tingly feeling under your skin;
trouble sleeping (insomnia); or
mild skin rash.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Usual Adult Dose for Obesity:
Initial Dose: 10 mg orally once a day.
Usual Geriatric Dose for Obesity:
In general, dose selection for an elderly patient should be cautious, reflecting the greater frequency of decreased hepatic, renal, or cardiac function, and of concomitant disease or other drug therapy.
Usual Pediatric Dose for Obesity:
Based on one study (n=60)14 to 17 years:Initial Dose: 10 mg orally once a day.
Ask your doctor before taking any decongestants, cough medicine, or other diet pills.
The following drugs can interact with sibutramine. Tell your doctor if you are using any of these:
lithium (Lithobid, Eskalith, and others);
tryptophan or L-tryptophan;
an antibiotic such as erythromycin (E.E.S., EryPed, Ery-Tab, Erythrocin);
an antidepressant such as citalopram (Celexa), desvenlafaxine (Pristiq), duloxetine (Cymbalta), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem, Symbyax), paroxetine (Paxil), sertraline (Zoloft), venlafaxine (Effexor), and others;
ergot medicine such as dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. 45, Migranal Nasal Spray), ergonovine (Ergotrate), ergotamine (Ergomar), or methylergonovine (Methergine).
migraine headache medicine such as sumatriptan (Imitrex) or zolmitriptan (Zomig); or
narcotic pain medication such as fentanyl (Actiq, Duragesic, Fentora, Onsolis), meperidine (Demerol), pentazocine (Talwin).
This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with sibutramine. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over the counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.