Prescribing Advice for GPs

An NHS Prescribing Advisers' Blog

Duloxetine Update

Duloxetine (Cymbalta®) is an antidepressant that has been the subject of several previous postings. Some of this information is now in need of an update.

To clarify the current situation:

  • The Scottish Medicines Consortium have restricted use of duloxetine in Scotland
  • Lancashire Care Trust have restrictions in place on duloxetine
  • The Summary of Product Characteristics recommends that patients (and carers) are made aware of the need to monitor for suicidal ideation/behaviour and that there is "close supervision of high-risk patients"
  • The MHRA publication Current Problems in Pharmacovigilance recommends "careful and frequent patient monitoring during treatment is recommended, particularly for high risk groups."
  • [Update] Leeds NHS Health Community (PCT, Acute and Care Trusts) have recommended restricted use of duloxetine

Action: The existing advice remains unchanged at this time; duloxetine should not be used as an antidepressant in a Primary Care Setting.

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