Bromocriptine

treats type diabetes. It is also treats hyperprolactinemia, acromegaly, and Parkinson's disease. Take with food to avoid nausea.

Bromocriptine Overview

Reviewed: September 14, 2013
Updated: 

Bromocriptine is a prescription medication used to treat type 2 diabetes mellitus, hyperprolactinemia, acromegaly, and Parkinson's disease. Bromocriptine belongs to a group of drugs called dopamine receptor agonists. It treats hyperprolactinemia by decreasing the amount of prolactin in the body. It treats acromegaly by decreasing the amount of growth hormone in the body. It treats Parkinson's disease by acting like dopamine, affecting the brain processes that control movement. 

Bromocriptine comes in tablet and capsule form. It is taken up to 3 times daily with food.

Common side effects include nausea, headache, drowsiness, and dizziness. Do not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how it affects you.

Patient Ratings for Bromocriptine

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What are you taking Bromocriptine for?

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  • Other
  • Acromegaly
  • Amenorrhea
  • Hyperprolactinemia
  • Hypogonadism
  • Infertility
  • Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome
  • Parkinson Disease

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  • A couple weeks
  • A month or so
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Bromocriptine Cautionary Labels

precautionsprecautionsprecautionsprecautionsprecautionsprecautionsprecautions

Uses of Bromocriptine

Bromocriptine is a prescription medication used to:

  • type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (Cycloset)
  • treat the effects of hyperprolactinemia (high levels of a natural hormonal substance called prolactin) including lack of menstrual periods, discharge from the nipples, infertility and hypogonadism (low levels of certain natural substances needed for normal development and sexual function)
  • shrink prolactin-secreting tumors which cause hyperprolactinemia in children
  • treat acromegaly (condition in which the pituitary produces excess growth hormone) 
  • treat parkinsonism including Parkinson's disease and other similar conditions

This medication may be prescribed for more uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Bromocriptine Brand Names

Bromocriptine may be found in some form under the following brand names:

Bromocriptine Drug Class

Bromocriptine is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Bromocriptine

Common side effects include:

  • nausea
  • headache
  • dizziness
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • constipation
  • stomach cramps
  • heartburn
  • loss of appetite
  • weakness
  • tiredness
  • drowsiness
  • difficulty sleeping
  • depression

This is not a complete list of bromocriptine side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Bromocriptine Interactions

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your doctor if you take:

  • amitriptyline (Elavil)
  • antifungals such as itraconazole (Sporanox) and ketoconazole (Nizoral)
  • antihistamines; chloramphenicol; dexamethasone (Decadron, Dexpak)
  • other dopamine agonists such as cabergoline (Dostinex), levodopa (Dopar, Larodopa), pergolide (Permax), and ropinirole (Requip)
  • ergot-type medications such as dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. 45, Migranal), ergoloid mesylates (Germinal, Hydergine), ergonovine (Ergotrate), ergotamine (Bellergal-S, Cafergot, Ergomar, Wigraine), methylergonovine (Methergine), and methysergide (Sansert)
  • haloperidol (Haldol)
  • imipramine (Tofranil)
  • insulin; macrolide antibiotics such as clarithromycin (Biaxin, in PrevPac) and erythromycin (E.E.S., E-Mycin, Erythrocin)
  • certain medications for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) such as indinavir (Crixivan), nelfinavir (Viracept), and ritonavir (Norvir, in Kaletra)
  • oral medications for diabetes
  • medications for asthma, colds, high blood pressure, migraines, and nausea
  • medications for mental illness such as clozapine (Clozaril, FazaClo), olanzapine (Zyprexa, in Symbyax), thiothixene (Navane), and ziprasidone (Geodon)
  • methyldopa (in Aldoril)
  • metoclopramide (Reglan)
  • nefazodone
  • octreotide (Sandostatin)
  • pimozide (Orap)
  • probenecid (in Col-Probenecid, Probalan)
  • reserpine
  • rifampin 
  • sumatriptan (Imitrex)

This is not a complete list of bromocriptine drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

 

Bromocriptine Precautions

Serious side effects have been reported with bromocriptine including the following:

  • Low blood pressure
  • Seizures
  • Fluid build up around the heart.  Tell your doctor if you notice any of the Following signs or symptoms:
    • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
    • Discomfort when breathing while lying down
    • Chest pain, usually behind the breastbone or on the left side of the chest that often feels worse when you breathe and feels better when you are sitting up, rather than lying down
    • Cough
    • Low-grade fever
    • Rapid heart rate
  • Fluid build up around the lungs
  • Damage to the tissue in the lungs
  • Inflammation of the sac-like covering of the heart
  • Confusion and mental disturbances
  • Hallucinations (visual or auditory)
  • Intense urge to spend money uncontrollably, intense urge to gamble, increased sexual urges and other intense urges and the inability to control these urges
  • Numbness, tingling, or pain in your fingers especially in cold weather
  • Blurred or impaired vision

High blood pressure, heart attack, seizures, stroke, have been reported in postpartum women treated with bromocriptine. The use of the drug in patients with uncontrolled hypertension is not recommended.

Bromocriptine can cause drowsiness. Do not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how bromocriptine affects you.

Bromocriptine may cause dizziness, nausea, sweating, and fainting when you get up too quickly from a lying position. This is more common when you first start taking bromocriptine or when your dose is increased. To avoid this problem, get out of bed slowly, resting your feet on the floor for a few minutes before standing up.

Do not take bromocriptine if you:

  • are allergic to bromocriptine or to any of its ingredients
  • have sensitivity to any ergot alkaloids
  • have uncontrolled hypertension
  • become pregnant
  • are in a postpartum period and have a history of coronary artery disease

Bromocriptine Food Interactions

Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with bromocriptine and lead to potentially dangerous effects. Discuss the use of grapefruit products with your doctor.

Inform MD

Before taking bromocriptine, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions. Especially tell your doctor if you:

  • if you are allergic to bromocriptine or to any of its ingredients
  • if you are allergic to ergot alkaloids such as cabergoline (Dostinex), dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. 45, Migranal), ergoloid mesylates (Germinal, Hydergine), ergonovine (Ergotrate), ergotamine (Bellergal-S, Cafergot, Ergomar, Wigraine), methylergonovine (Methergine), methysergide (Sansert), and pergolide (Permax)
  • you have high blood pressure or migraine headaches that cause fainting. Your doctor may tell you not to take bromocriptine.
  • have recently given birth
  • have ever fainted
  • have or have ever had a heart attack
  • have a slow, fast, or irregular heartbeat
  • have a mental illness
  • have low blood pressure
  • have ulcers or bleeding in the stomach or intestines
  • have Raynaud's syndrome (condition in which the hands and feet become numb and cool when exposed to cold temperatures)
  • have heart, kidney, or liver disease
  • have any condition that prevents you from digesting foods containing sugar, starch, or dairy products normally
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.  If you become pregnant during your treatment with bromocriptine, stop taking the medication and call your doctor.
  • you are breastfeeding or planning on breasfeeding while you are taking bromocriptine.
  • are having surgery, including dental surgery

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Ask your doctor about the safe use of alcoholic beverages while you are taking bromocriptine. Alcohol can make the side effects from bromocriptine worse.

Ask your doctor what to do if you get sick, develop an infection or fever, experience unusual stress, or are injured. These conditions can affect your blood sugar and the amount of bromocriptine you may need.

Bromocriptine and Pregnancy

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

The FDA categorizes medications based on safety for use during pregnancy. Five categories - A, B, C, D, and X, are used to classify the possible risks to an unborn baby when a medication is taken during pregnancy.

Bromocriptine falls into category B.

Tell your doctor if are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. If you become pregnant during your treatment with bromocriptine, stop taking the medication and call your doctor.

If you are taking bromocriptine to treat lack of menstrual periods and infertility caused by hyperprolactinemia, use a method of birth control other than hormonal contraceptives (birth control pills, patches, rings, or injections) until you have regular menstrual periods; then stop using birth control.

You should be tested for pregnancy once every 4 weeks as long as you do not menstruate. Once your menstrual period returns, you should be tested for pregnancy any time your menstrual period is 3 days late.

If you do not wish to become pregnant, use a method of birth control other than hormonal contraceptives while you are taking bromocriptine. If you become pregnant during your treatment with bromocriptine, stop taking the medication and call your doctor.

Bromocriptine and Lactation

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. Do not breastfeed while you are taking bromocriptine.

Bromocriptine Usage

Take bromocriptine exactly as prescribed.

Bromocriptine comes in tablet and capsule form. It is taken up to 3 times depending on what is beinh treated. Take bromocriptine daily with food.

If you miss a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and take your next dose at the regular time. Do not take two doses of bromocriptine at the same time.

Bromocriptine Dosage

Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully.

The dose your doctor recommends may be based on the following:

  • the condition being treated
  • other medical conditions you have
  • how you respond to this medication

The recommended dose range of bromocriptine for the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus is 1.6 mg to 4.8 mg.

The recommended dose range of bromocriptine for the treatment of hyperprolactinemia is 2.5 to 15 mg/day.

The recommended dose range of bromocriptine for the treatment of acromegaly is 20 to 30 mg/day.

The initial dose of bromocriptine for the treatment of Parkinson’s Disease is 1/2 of a 2.5 mg SnapTabs twice daily with meals. Increases are then made on an individual basis. Your doctor will start you on a low dosage and will slowly increase the dose. Safety information is not known for doses over 100 mg/day. 

Bromocriptine Overdose

If you take too much bromocriptine, call your healthcare provider or local Poison Control Center, or seek emergency medical attention right away.

Other Requirements

  • Store below 25ºC (77ºF).
  • Keep this and all medicines out of the reach of children.