Chlordiazepoxide/amitriptyline (By mouth)
Amitriptyline Hydrochloride (am-i-TRIP-ti-leen hye-droe-KLOR-ide), Chlordiazepoxide (klor-dye-az-e-POX-ide)
Treats depression that is associated with anxiety. This medicine is a combination of a benzodiazepine and a tricyclic antidepressant.
There may be other brand names for this medicine.
When This Medicine Should Not Be Used
You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to chlordiazepoxide, amitriptyline, a benzodiazepine (such as Xanax®, Klonopin®, Tranxene®, Serax®, or Ativan®), or a tricyclic antidepressant (such as Elavil®, Sinequan®, or Tofranil®). You should not use this medicine if you have taken a monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor (such as Nardil®, Marplan®, Parnate®, or Eldepryl®) within the past 14 days. You should also not take this medicine if you have just had a heart attack.
How to Use This Medicine
- 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.
- This medicine can be habit-forming. You should not use more than the prescribed amount or for a longer time than your doctor has ordered.
- 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.
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- Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.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 are using cimetidine (Tagamet®), guanethidine (Ismelin®), medicine for a heart rhythm problem (such as quinidine, flecainide, propafenone, Quinaglute®, Tambocor®, or Rythmol®), a phenothiazine medicine (such as chlorpromazine, prochlorperazine, promethazine, thioridazine, Compazine®, Mellaril®, Phenergan®, or Thorazine®), or other medicines to treat depression (such as fluoxetine, sertraline, paroxetine, Prozac®, Zoloft®, or Paxil®).
- Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.
- Tell your doctor if you are using any medicines that make you sleepy. These include sleeping pills, cold and allergy medicine, narcotic pain relievers, and sedatives.
Warnings While Using This Medicine
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding. Tell your doctor if you have glaucoma, difficulty with urination, seizure disorders, an overactive thyroid, liver disease, kidney disease, or heart disease.
- For some children, teenagers, and young adults, this medicine can increase thoughts of suicide. Tell your doctor or your child's doctor right away if you or your child start to feel more depressed and have thoughts about hurting yourselves. Report any unusual thoughts or behaviors that trouble you or your child, especially if they are new or are getting worse quickly. Make sure the doctor knows if you or your child have trouble sleeping, get upset easily, have a big increase in energy, or start to act reckless. Also tell the doctor if you or your child have sudden or strong feelings, such as feeling nervous, angry, restless, violent, or scared. Let the doctor know if you, your child, or anyone in your family has bipolar disorder (manic-depressive) or has tried to commit suicide.
- This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert.
- 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.
- 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 progress 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
- Anxiety, restlessness, nervousness, or mood or mental changes.
- Change in how much or how often you urinate, or problems with urination.
- Changes in behavior, or thoughts of hurting yourself or others.
- Chest pain or shortness of breath.
- Extreme tiredness, or difficulty standing.
- Fast, pounding, or irregular heartbeat.
- Lightheadedness or fainting.
- Numbness or tingling in the hands and feet.
- Numbness or weakness in your arm or leg, or on one side of your body.
- Seizures or tremors.
- Severe confusion, or seeing or hearing things that are not there.
- Sudden or severe headache, problems with vision, speech, balance, or walking.
- Trouble sleeping or unusual dreams.
- Twitching, spasm, or muscle movements you cannot control.
- Unusual bleeding or bruising.
- Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
- Breast swelling or discharge in women.
- Changes in menstrual periods.
- Changes in vision.
- Dizziness or drowsiness.
- Dry mouth.
- Loss of appetite.
- Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, or upset stomach.
- Problems having sex.
- Stuffy or runny nose.
- Swelling of the breast or testicles in men.
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
- Last Reviewed on 06/12/2013
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This page was last updated: September 18, 2013