Strattera

Generic Name: Atomoxetine

  • What is this medication and its most common uses?

    Strattera is a medicine used to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

    Strattera is a federally controlled substance because it has abuse potential.

  • What should I know when beginning and continuing on this medication?

    How does this medication work?

    Strattera works by changing the amount of certain chemicals in your brain, thereby improving symptoms of ADHD.

    What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?

    What: Strattera is an important part of a total treatment program for people with ADHD that may include counseling or other therapies. Strattera may help increase attention and decrease impulsiveness and hyperactivity in people with ADHD.

    When: Everyone responds differently to treatment, so try to be patient and follow your healthcare provider's directions. It is important that you take Strattera exactly as your healthcare provider has prescribed.

    How do I know it is working?

    You may start to notice an improvement in your symptoms. This is a good indicator that your medication is working. Your healthcare provider may ask you questions from time to time to assess how well your medicine is working and to check for improvement of your condition.

  • What are the possible side effects of this medication?

    The following is not a full list of side effects. Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Only your healthcare provider can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this medication.

    Strattera increases the risk of suicidal thoughts or actions in some children and teens. Call the healthcare provider right away if your child or teenager has thoughts of suicide or sudden changes in mood or behavior, especially at the beginning of treatment or after a change in dose. Strattera is not approved for major depressive disorder.

    Adults

    More common side effects may include: constipation, dry mouth, nausea, fatigue, decreased appetite, sleeplessness, sexual side effects, problems passing urine, menstrual cramps, feelings of warmth in the face, neck, and chest, and sudden intense episodes of heat and sweating.

    Children and Adolescents

    More common side effects may include: nausea, vomiting, tiredness, loss of appetite, stomach pain, drowsiness.

    Less common side effects of Strattera may include: allergic reactions (such as rash), priapism (painful, prolonged erection).

    Severe liver damage with symptoms such as itching, right upper belly pain, dark urine, yellow skin or eyes, or unexplained flu-like symptoms.

    Sudden death in patients who have heart problems or heart defects; stroke and heart attack in adults; increased blood pressure and heart rate with symptoms such as chest pain, shortness of breath, or fainting.

    Mental problems with symptoms such as new or worsening behavior and thought problems, bipolar illness, aggressive behavior, or hostility. Children and teenagers may also begin to hear voices, believe in things that are not true, or become suspicious.

    Slowing of growth (height and weight) in children.

  • Who should not take this medication?

    Do not take Strattera if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients.

    Do not take Strattera if you have glaucoma (high pressure in the eye), pheochromocytoma (a tumor of the adrenal gland), or severe heart disease.

    Do not take Strattera if you are taking an antidepressant medication called a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) (such as phenelzine or selegiline) or have taken any within the past 14 days.

  • What should I tell my healthcare provider before I take the first dose of this medication?

    Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Strattera. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have a family history of suicidal thoughts or actions, heart problems, high or low blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, mental problems, bipolar disorder, depression, or liver disease.

  • What is the usual dosage?

    The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your healthcare provider uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your healthcare provider may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your healthcare provider's approval.

    Adolescents and children ≥6 years: Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose based on your weight.

    If you have liver impairment or are taking certain medications, your healthcare provider will adjust your dose appropriately.

  • How should I take this medication?

    Take Strattera exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not change your dose or stop taking Strattera without first talking to your healthcare provider.

    Strattera is usually taken once or twice a day and it should be taken at the same time each day to help you remember.

    Swallow Strattera capsules whole with water or other liquids. The capsules should not be chewed, crushed, or opened. Take Strattera with or without food.

  • What should I avoid while taking this medication?

    Do not touch a broken Strattera capsule. Wash hands and surfaces that touched an open capsule. If any powder gets in your eyes, rinse them with water right away and call your healthcare provider.

    Do not drive or operate machinery until you know how Strattera affects you.

  • What are the possible food and drug interactions associated with this medication?

    If Strattera is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. Strattera may interact with numerous medications. Therefore, it is very important that you tell your healthcare provider about any other medications you are taking.

  • May I receive this medication if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    The effects of Strattera during pregnancy and breastfeeding are unknown. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What should I do if I miss a dose of this medication?

    If you miss a dose of Strattera, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and return to the regular dosing schedule. Do not take two doses at once.

  • How should I store this medication?

    Store at room temperature.

Meet the Pharmacists

I'm Shereen A. Gharbia, PharmD. Welcome to PDR Health!

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