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You are here : 3-RX.com > Drugs & Medications > Quick Drug Information (DrugNotes) > Imipramine (Oral)

Imipramine (By Mouth)

Imipramine (im-IP-ra-meen)

Treats depression. May also be used to treat bedwetting in children. Belongs to a class of drugs called tricyclic antidepressants.

Brand Name(s):

Tofranil, Tofranil-PM
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 ever had an allergic reaction to it or to related medicine such as Elavil®, Aventyl®, Tegretol®, Ludiomil®, or Desyrel®. You should not take imipramine if you have had a recent heart attack or have taken an MAO inhibitor such as Nardil®, Marplan®, or Parnate® in the past 14 days.

How to Use This Medicine:

Capsule, Tablet

  • Your doctor will tell you how much medicine to take and how often.
  • Take with or without food.
  • Do not crush or chew the capsules. You may open the capsules and mix the medicine beads with soft food (pudding or applesauce). Swallow the mixture without chewing.
  • If you are taking this drug for depression, it may take 2 to 3 weeks before you start to feel better.
  • Do not stop taking this medicine suddenly. You may need to take smaller and smaller doses before completely stopping.

If a dose is missed:

  • Take the missed dose as soon as possible.
  • If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to take your medicine and skip the missed dose.
  • If you take one dose a day at bedtime, You should not use the missed dose the next morning. Wait until your next regular bedtime dose.
  • You should not use two doses at the same time.
How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:

  • Store this medicine in a tightly-closed container, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

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

  • Do not drink alcohol while you are taking imipramine.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are taking other drugs that can make you sleepy such as sleeping pills, sedatives, cold or allergy medicines, narcotic pain killers, muscle relaxants, or tranquilizers.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are taking medicine for high blood pressure.
Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • This medicine is harmful to use during pregnancy. It may cause birth defects.
  • Using this medicine while breastfeeding may cause drowsiness or other side effects in the nursing baby.
  • Tell your doctor if you have ever had glaucoma, trouble urinating, stomach problems, seizures, or heart, liver, kidney, or thyroid disease.
  • Do not give this medicine to a child unless directed to do so by the child's doctor.
  • This medicine may cause dizziness and vision changes. Avoid driving a car or operating machinery.
  • This medicine may make your skin more sensitive to sunlight. Use a sunscreen when outdoors. Avoid sunlamps and tanning beds.
Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

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

  • Fainting
  • Fast, pounding or irregular heartbeat
  • Unexplained fever or sore throat
  • Skin rash
  • Trouble going to the bathroom (urinating)

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

  • Dizziness or drowsiness
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea, constipation
  • Weight gain
  • Changes in vision such as trouble focusing
If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor.

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