Mo - clo - bem - ide
Why have I been prescribed moclobemide?
Moclobemide is used to treat depression. It is an antidepressant. Depression is a common condition. It is different from the
normal “ups and downs” of everyday life. People with depression may feel sad most of the time and cannot see an end to
their sadness. Often people also have physical symptoms. Tiredness and poor sleep are very common, and so are
changes in appetite. Many people also find that they simply cannot enjoy any of life’s pleasures.
Depression is treated in many ways. Certain “talking” therapies are also effective for some people. Antidepressants can
generally be relied upon to relieve the symptoms of depression in most people.
What exactly is moclobemide?
Moclobemide an antidepressant. It is not a tranquilliser or sleeping tablet. It belongs to a group of medicines called the
monoamine oxidase inhibitors (or MAOIs). Moclobemide is a newer kind of MAOI called a RIMA (Reversible Inhibitor of
Monoamineoxidase-A). Thousands of people with depression have taken moclobemide and now lead normal lives. The
brand or trade name for moclobemide is ‘Manerix’.
Is moclobemide safe to take?
It is usually safe to have moclobemide regularly as prescribed by your doctor, but it doesn’t suit everyone. Let your doctor
know if any of the following apply to you, as extra care may be needed:
a) if you have Parkinson's disease or phaeochromocytoma, or suffer from heart, thyroid or liver trouble;
b) if you are taking any other medication. This includes medicines bought from your pharmacist without a prescription.
See the question on "medicines to avoid" below;
c) if you are pregnant, breast feeding, or wish to become pregnant.
Are there any medicines that I should avoid or take care with?
Ask your pharmacist or doctor before you buy any medicine, especially if it is for a cough, cold, the flu, hay fever or catarrh,
especially if it contains phenylephrine, phenylpropanolamine or pseudoephedrine. Moclobemide should be safe with these
medicines, but ask to make sure. You must not take anything containing codeine, for example ‘Veganin’, ‘Paracodol’ or
Solpadeine’. If you take cimetidine (‘Tagamet’), your dose of moclobemide may need to be changed. St. John’s wort
should be avoided. Always get advice from your pharmacist if you are not sure.
What is the usual dose of moclobemide?
The usual dose of moclobemide is 150mg twice a day. The usual maximum dose is 300mg twice a day.
How should I take my moclobemide?
Look at the label on your medicine; it should have all the necessary instructions on it. Follow this advice carefully. If you
have any questions, speak to your doctor or pharmacist. Most medicines are now dispensed with an information leaflet for
you to read.
What should I do if I miss a dose?
Never change your dose without checking with your doctor. If you forget a dose, take it as soon as you remember, as long
as it is within a few hours of the usual time.
Are there any foods or drinks that I should avoid?
Some foods can cause problems for people on moclobemide. For example: cheese, pâté, pickled herrings, yeast extracts
(e.g. Oxo, Marmite, Bovril, Twiglets), broad bean pods, Chianti wine and home-brewed beer. Moclobemide is usually safe
to take with these foods and drinks. However, it is still best to avoid eating or drinking large amounts of them. Ask your
pharmacist, doctor or nurse if you have any worries.
What will happen to me when I start taking moclobemide?
All antidepressants work slowly. People tend to feel better over a period of weeks rather than days. Different symptoms
may get better at different times. Most people find that they feel noticeably better after about two or three weeks. However,
the full effect of antidepressants is usually felt only after about four to six weeks. It is very important to continue to take
antidepressants so that the full effects can be felt. Speak to your pharmacist, doctor or nurse if you have any questions
about this.
Unfortunately you might get some side effects before your mood gets any better. Most of these should go away after a
week or so. Look at the table over the page. It tells you what to do if you get any side effects. Not everyone will get the side
effects shown. There are many other possible side effects. Ask your pharmacist, doctor or nurse if you are worried about
anything else that you think might be a side effect.
Side effect What is it? What should I do if it happens to me?
DIZZINESS Feeling light-headed and faint. Don't stand up too quickly. Try and lie down when you feel it coming on.
Don't drive.
HEADACHE When your head is pounding and
It should be safe to take aspirin or paracetamol. Don't take anything
containing codeine. If your headache persists, see your doctor.
INSOMNIA Not being able to get to sleep or stay
Take your last dose no later than midday. Discuss this with your doctor.
AGITATION Feeling restless or on edge. Try and relax by taking deep breaths. Contact your doctor if it worries you.
DRY MOUTH Not much saliva or spit. Sugar-free boiled sweets, chewing gum or eating citrus fruits usually
helps. If not, your doctor can give you a mouth spray. A change in
medicine or dose may be possible.
NAUSEA Feeling sick. Taking each dose with or after food may help. If it is bad, contact your
You can get diarrhoea or
See your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
OEDEMA When your ankles swell up. Discuss this with your doctor when you see them next
RASH Rashes anywhere on the skin.
These may be itchy.
Stop taking the drug and contact your doctor.
What about alcohol?
It is officially recommended that people taking moclobemide should not drink alcohol. This is because both moclobemide
and alcohol can cause drowsiness. If the two are taken at the same time, severe drowsiness can result. This can lead to
falls or accidents. As well as this, drinking alcohol often makes depression worse. Excessive drinking is especially likely to
do this. Once people are used to taking medication, they can sometimes drink alcohol in small amounts without any harm.
Avoid alcohol altogether for the first one or two months. After this, if you want a drink, try a glass of your normal drink and
see how you feel. If this doesn’t make you feel drowsy, then it is probably OK to drink small amounts. It pays to be very
cautious because alcohol affects people in different ways, especially when they are taking medication.
Don’t stop taking your medication because you fancy a drink at the weekend. If you do drink alcohol, drink only small
amounts. Never drink any alcohol and drive while on moclobemide. Discuss any concerns you may have with your doctor
or pharmacist.
Is moclobemide addictive?
Moclobemide is not addictive, although some people do get some “discontinuation” effects if they stop some other
antidepressants suddenly. These effects include anxiety, dizziness, feeling sick and not being able to sleep. Some people
feel confused and “out of sorts”. These symptoms are rare with moclobemide. It is best to discuss this with your doctor.
When I feel better, can I stop taking it?
No. If you stop taking moclobemide, your original symptoms may return. To reduce your chances of becoming depressed
again, you may need to take your antidepressant for at least 6 months after you feel better, and sometimes longer. This is
not thought to be harmful. You should decide with your doctor when you can come off it.
Remember, leaflets like this can only describe some of the effects of medication. You may find other
books or leaflets also useful. If you have access to the internet you may find a lot of information
there as well, but be careful, as internet based information is not always accurate.
2001 United Kingdom Psychiatric Pharmacy Group
This leaflet is to help you understand about your medicine. It is not an official manufacturer's Patient Information Leaflet.
For more information call the UKPPG National Telephone Helpline, 11am to 5pm, Monday to Friday on 020 7919 2999 or
This leaflet has been supplied by:
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