What does duloxetine do and how effective is it?
What does duloxetine do?
Duloxetine belongs to a group of medicines called serotonin and noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs). Serotonin and noradrenaline are neurotransmitters — chemicals that relay signals between the cells in your brain. SNRIs increase the amount of these two neurotransmitters in your brain, and this is how duloxetine is thought to improve the symptoms of depression
How effective is duloxetine?
About 50% of people treated with antidepressants find their depression symptoms are halved. Although all antidepressants have shown similar efficacy when tested in groups of people in clinical trials, keep in mind that individuals can find one antidepressant works better for them than another. So if the first antidepressant you try doesn’t seem to be working for you after a few weeks, talk to your doctor about switching to another. Psychological therapy, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), could also be an option.
Find out more about
- Who duloxetine is for and who should be cautious
- Side effects of duloxetine
- Interactions with duloxetine
- Brands of duloxetine
If you are starting duloxetine, see 10 things you should know about antidepressants.
For more information
- Starting, switching and stopping antidepressants
- Managing side effects of antidepressants
- Psychological therapies
The consumer medicine information (CMI) for your brand of duloxetine is available from our website or a pharmacist. The CMI includes:
- How to take this medicine
- What to do if you forget to take it
- If you take too much (overdose)
- Things you must and must not do while taking this medicine
- Signs of severe reactions and what to do.
- Rossi S, ed. eAMH [online]. Adelaide: Australian Medicines Handbook, 2012. www.amh.net.au. (Accessed 9 February 2012).
- Psychotropic Expert Group. Therapeutic Guidelines: Psychotropic, Version 6. In: eTG complete [CD-ROM]. Melbourne: Therapeutic Guidelines Limited; 2008.
- Eli Lilly Australia Pty Limited. Cymbalta consumer medicine information. October 2010. (Accessed 22 March 2012).