Bromocriptine (By mouth)


Bromocriptine (broe-moe-KRIP-teen)

Treats menstrual problems, growth hormone overproduction, Parkinson disease, and pituitary tumors. Also used to stop breast milk production. Also used to help control blood sugar levels in patients with type 2 diabetes. This medicine is an ergot alkaloid.

Brand Name(s)

Parlodel, Cycloset

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

Do not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to bromocriptine or to other ergot medicines (such as ergonovine, ergotamine, Cafergot®, Ergomar®, Ergostat®, or Wigraine®). Bromocriptine should not be taken by women who are breastfeeding or after pregnancy in women with a history of coronary artery disease. You should not use this medicine if you have poorly controlled high blood pressure or high blood pressure during pregnancy. Do not also use Cycloset® if you have migraine headaches with fainting, type 1 diabetes, or diabetic ketoacidosis.

How to Use This Medicine

Capsule, Tablet

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Your dose may need to be changed several times in order to find out what works best for you. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.Anything that affects your blood sugar level, such as illness or trauma, can affect how much medicine you need. Tell your doctor about any changes to your health.
  • Take Cycloset® within 2 hours after you wake up in the morning.
  • It is best to take this medicine with food or milk.
  • Carefully follow your doctor's instructions about any special diet or exercise program.
  • You may not feel the effects of bromocriptine until you have been taking it for 2 to 3 weeks.
  • Drink extra fluids so you will pass more urine while you are using this medicine. This will keep your kidneys working well and help prevent kidney problems.
  • This medicine comes with patient instructions. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you also use medicine to lower blood pressure (such as atenolol, hydrochlorothiazide [HCTZ], lisinopril, metoprolol, quinapril, Accupril®, Cozaar®, Diovan®, Lotrel®, Norvasc®, Toprol®, or Zestril®). Tell your doctor if you also use insulin or other diabetes medicine that you take by mouth (such as pioglitazone, rosiglitazone, Actos®, or Avandia®).
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you also use metoclopramide (Reglan®), octreotide (Sandostatin®), probenecid (Benemid®), NSAID pain or arthritis medicine (such as aspirin, celecoxib, ibuprofen, Aleve®, Celebrex®, or Voltaren®), medicine to treat an infection (such as chloramphenicol, erythromycin, itraconazole, ketoconazole, sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim, Bactrim®, Chloromycetin®, Ery-Tab®, Nizoral®, Septra®, or Sporanox®), medicine to treat mental illness (such as clozapine, haloperidol, olanzapine, pimozide, ziprasidone, Clozaril®, Geodon®, Haldol®, Orap®, or Zyprexa®), a phenothiazine medicine (such as prochlorperazine, Compazine®, Mellaril®, Phenergan®, Thorazine®, or Trilafon®), or medicine to treat HIV or AIDS (such as indinavir, ritonavir, saquinavir, Invirase®, or Viracept®).
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you use isometheptene, phenylpropanolamine, or sumatriptan (Imitrex®).
  • Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant. If you are not trying to get pregnant, you should use birth control other than oral contraceptives. You will need a pregnancy test every 4 weeks during the time you do not have a period and every time you miss a monthly period. Tell your doctor right away if you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you have liver disease, kidney disease, heart or blood vessel disease, high or low blood pressure, lung disease, seizures, stomach ulcers or bleeding, or a history of heart attack, stroke, or mental illness. Tell your doctor if you have galactose intolerance, severe lactase deficiency, or glucose-galactose malabsorption.
  • Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using this medicine. You may need to stop using this medicine several days before having surgery or medical tests.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy, lightheaded, or drowsy. Do not drive, use machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how this medicine affects you. Stand or sit up slowly if you are dizzy. This is more likely to happen when you begin to use the medicine or if your dose is increased.
  • Check with your doctor if you have loss of appetite, lower back pain, nausea, vomiting, severe stomach pain, or weakness while taking this medicine. These may be symptoms of retroperitoneal fibrosis. This is more likely to occur if you receive high doses of this medicine or use it for a long time.
  • This medicine has caused unusual behavior in some people. Talk with your doctor if you start having intense urges to spend money or gamble or if your sex drive increases while you are using this medicine.
  • If you have Parkinson disease, it is important that your doctor check your skin for melanoma (skin cancer) regularly.
  • Do not stop using this medicine suddenly without asking your doctor. You may need to slowly decrease your dose before stopping it completely.
  • Your doctor will need to check your blood or urine at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Change in how much or how often you urinate
  • Changes in vision
  • Chest pain or trouble breathing
  • Confusion, severe headache, or seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not there
  • Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, and body aches
  • Lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting
  • Seizures
  • Severe nausea and vomiting
  • Severe stomach pain, lower back pain, loss of appetite, or weakness
  • Swelling of your feet, ankles, or lower legs
  • Unusual tiredness, drowsiness, or weakness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Mild headache
  • Mild nausea or vomiting
  • Stuffy or runny nose

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

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

Version Info

  • Last Reviewed on 06/12/2013

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This page was last updated: September 18, 2013

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