Healthnotes Index:

Bromocriptine

This form:

Pronounced

"brom-oh-KRIP-teen"

Common brand names:

Parlodel

Uses

Bromocriptine is used alone or with other medications (such as levodopa) to treat Parkinson's disease. It can improve your ability to move and can decrease shakiness (tremor), stiffness, slowed movement, and unsteadiness. It may also decrease the number of episodes of not being able to move ("on-off syndrome").

Bromocriptine is also used to treat high levels of a certain hormone made by the body (prolactin). High levels of prolactin may cause problems such as unwanted breast milk, missed/stopped periods, difficulty becoming pregnant, decreased sperm production, and decreased sexual ability. Bromocriptine may be used to treat a type of tumor which causes the high levels of prolactin (prolactin-secreting adenomas). It can help to reduce the tumor size. Bromocriptine is not recommended for stopping unwanted breast milk after pregnancy, miscarriage, or abortion because of possible serious side effects (such as high blood pressure, seizure, heart attack, stroke).

Bromocriptine is also used to treat high levels of growth hormone (acromegaly).

Bromocriptine is an ergot medication that works by acting like a certain natural substance (dopamine) in the brain. It also prevents the release of certain hormones (growth hormone, prolactin). Bromocriptine can lower these hormone levels, but it does not cure the causes of the increased levels.

How to Use This Medication

Take this medication by mouth with food as directed by your doctor, usually 1 or 2 times daily. The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. For the treatment of acromegaly, the dosage is also based on the growth hormone levels. To reduce your risk of side effects, your doctor may direct you to start this medication at a low dose and gradually increase your dose. Follow your doctor's instructions carefully.

Take this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time(s) each day.

Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when this drug is suddenly stopped. Also, you may experience symptoms such as fever, muscle stiffness, and confusion. To prevent these symptoms while you are stopping treatment with this drug, your doctor may reduce your dose gradually. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details. Report any new or worsening symptoms right away.

Tell your doctor if your condition does not improve or if it worsens.

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Information expires June 2016.

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