Meridia helps with diets. It is best used with a reduced calorie diet and exercise to
promote and maintain weight loss. Meridia affects chemicals in the brain that have an
affect on weight maintenance. Meridia is used in collaboration with diet and exercise to
treat obesity that may be related to diabetes, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure.
Do not use Meridia if you have taken an MAO inhibitor such as
- rasagiline (Azilect),
- isocarboxazid (Marplan),
- phenelzine (Nardil),
- furazolidone (Furoxone),
- tranylcypromine (Parnate), or
- selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam)
in the last 14 days. Serious, life threatening side effects can occur if you use Meridia
before the MAO inhibitor has cleared from your body. Do not take this medicine if you
are also taking medicine for depression or obsessive-compulsive disorder (SSRI).
You should not take Meridia if you are allergic to Meridia (sibutramine), or if you have:
- a history of heart disease (congestive heart failure, heart rhythm disorder);
- an eating disorder (anorexia or bulimia);
- a history of coronary artery disease (atherosclerosis);
- a history of heart attack or stroke;
- severe or uncontrolled hypertension (high blood pressure);
- or if you are taking stimulant diet pills.
Inform your doctor of any of the following conditions you may have. You may need to
adjust your dose of Meridia or have special tests If you have any of these conditions:
- high blood pressure;
- a history of gallstones;
- epilepsy or seizure disorder;
- liver disease;
- underactive thyroid;
- a bleeding or blood clotting disorder;
- kidney disease;
or if you are older than 65 or younger than 16.
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or intend to become pregnant. Meridia is FDA
pregnancy category C. At this stage it is not known whether Meridia will harm an unborn
baby. Do not use Meridia without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby
as it is not known whether sibutramine passes into breast milk or if it could harm a
This medicine will add to the effects of alcohol and other depressants.
Meridia is taken by mouth with or without food usually once a day. Take Meridia exactly
as your doctor prescribes, do not take a higher or lower dose, do not take it more often,
and do not take it for longer than prescribed. Take Meridia exactly as directed.
Sibutramine can be habit forming.
Your doctor may prescribe a low dose of Meridia to begin with (for the first 4 weeks)
and then, following this time period, may increase your dose. If you experience certain
side effects while on your stating dose your doctor may decrease your dose.
Be sure to weigh yourself regularly, and contact your doctor if you do not lose at
least 4 pounds (1.8 kilograms) in your first month (4 weeks) of treatment.
Your doctor may want to change your dose of Meridia if this is the case.
Store this medicine at room temperature away from heat, moisture, and light.
Possible side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction:
- difficult breathing;
- swelling of your face,
- or throat.
Stop using sibutramine and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect
such as: shortness of breath; fainting; confusion; chest pain; fast or pounding heartbeat;
nausea; vomiting; seizures; shaking hands that you cannot control; muscle stiffness;
uncoordinated or abnormal movement; fever; excessive sweating; shivering; swelling
of the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs; unusual
bleeding or bruising; difficulty speaking, breathing, or swallowing; hoarseness; hives;
skin rash; itching; large pupils (black area in center of eyes); change in vision; eye pain.
Less serious side effects may include: dry mouth, upset stomach; constipation,
stomach pain; flu symptoms, runny or stuffy nose, sore throat; cough; headache,
back pain, joint pain; feeling nervous, dizzy, depressed or anxious; changes in
appetite; mild skin rash; trouble sleeping (insomnia); or warmth, redness,
or tingly feeling under your skin.
Sibutramine may cause other side effects.
Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
Any weight loss program should include changes in dietary habits as well as an increase
in exercise. To keep your healthy weight, these changes should be continued indefinitely.
If you miss a dose of this medicine, skip the missed dose and go back to
your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.