Amitriptyline is an antidepressant in the tricyclic class. It affects chemicals in the brain and is used to treat depression symptoms. Amitriptyline is not approved for use in minors under 12 years old.
Before starting amitriptyline, inform your doctor of your medical history and other drugs you take, especially if you have a history of mental illness or psychosis, heart disease, diabetes, glaucoma, and urination problems. Also inform your doctor if you become pregnant or breast-feed. Symptoms may require up to 4 weeks to improve. If you undergo surgery, alert the surgeon in advance that you take amitriptyline. Do not stop taking this drug abruptly.
Do not take amitriptyline if you recently had a heart attack or if you have used a MAO inhibitor in the last 14 days. Tell your doctor if you have used an SSRI antidepressant in the last 5 weeks. Some people experience thoughts of suicide when they first begin treatment, especially younger people. Amitriptyline overdose may be fatal; symptoms include: extreme drowsiness, confusion, hallucinations, temperature sensitivity, stiffness, convulsions, fainting, vomiting, and agitation. Do not drink alcohol. Use caution when doing anything that requires alertness, such as driving. Avoid exposure to sunlight and tanning beds.
Find emergency medical help if you experience an overdose, allergic reaction, or other serious reaction. Contact your doctor at once if you encounter a severe reaction such as: unusual thoughts/behavior, lightheadedness, chest pain/pressure, pounding heart, hallucinations, confusion, convulsions, difficulty urinating, severe constipation, bruising and bleeding, or sudden weakness. Other side effects may include: digestive problems, unusual taste in the mouth, appetite/weight changes, itching, breast swelling in women, and decreased libido. Amitriptyline may interact with other drugs, such as other antidepressants and heart rhythm medications. Talk to your doctor before taking sleeping pills, narcotics, muscle relaxers, anxiety medications, antidepressants, seizure medication, and medications that make you sleepy.