Precautions and Warnings With Bromocriptine
It is important to talk to your healthcare provider about the precautions and warnings with bromocriptine, as the medication can cause complications or worsen certain medical conditions. Bromocriptine has been reported to cause high or low blood pressure, heart attacks, and strokes. To help minimize risks, you should tell your healthcare provider about any existing conditions you have before starting the drug.
You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking bromocriptine mesylate (Cycloset™, Parlodel®) if you have:
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- Heart disease
- Low blood pressure (hypotension)
- Liver disease, such as liver failure, cirrhosis, or hepatitis
- Kidney disease, such as kidney failure (renal failure)
- Psychosis, such as schizophrenia
- Any allergies, including allergies to foods, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about any medications you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking bromocriptine include the following:
- Bromocriptine has been reported to cause heart attacks, strokes, high blood pressure (hypertension), and low blood pressure (hypotension).
- At one point, bromocriptine was approved to suppress postpartum lactation (to suppress breast milk production after childbirth for women who will not be breastfeeding). However, bromocriptine is no longer approved for this use, since the benefits of bromocriptine are not worth the risk of serious side effects (such as strokes) for this use (see Parlodel and Breastfeeding or Cycloset and Breastfeeding).
- There have been some cases of lung problems in people who took bromocriptine. In general, these problems slowly improved after bromocriptine was stopped.
- It is not known whether bromocriptine is safe for people with liver or kidney disease.
- Intense, unusual urges have been reported in people taking Parkinson's disease medications. Examples include an intense desire to gamble or to engage in risky sexual behavior. Let your healthcare provider know right away if you experience any of these urges.
- People with Parkinson's disease have an increased risk for melanoma (a type of skin cancer). At this time, it is not clear if this is caused by Parkinson's disease medications or other factors. It is a good idea to have regular skin checks to monitor for this problem.
- Bromocriptine can worsen psychosis and heart disease. If you have a history of such problems, bromocriptine may not be a good choice for you.
- Let your healthcare provider know if you develop blue, numb fingers or toes while taking bromocriptine. Your dosage may need to be reduced. Keeping your fingers and toes warm can help prevent this problem.
- Bromocriptine can cause hallucinations (seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not really there) or other psychological problems. Let your healthcare provider know if you develop hallucinations while taking bromocriptine.
- Bromocriptine can potentially interact with several medications (see Drug Interactions With Bromocriptine).
- Bromocriptine is usually considered a pregnancy Category B medication. This means that it is probably safe for use during pregnancy, although the benefits may not outweigh the risks in many cases (see Parlodel and Pregnancy or Cycloset and Pregnancy).
- Women should not take bromocriptine while breastfeeding. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Parlodel and Breastfeeding or Cycloset and Breastfeeding).