Generic Name: Selegiline Transdermal System (se LE ji leen)
Brand Name: Emsam
Medically reviewed on September 5, 2018
- Drugs like this one have raised the chance of suicidal thoughts or actions in children and young adults. The risk may be greater in people who have had these thoughts or actions in the past. All people who take Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) need to be watched closely. Call the doctor right away if signs like low mood (depression), nervousness, restlessness, grouchiness, panic attacks, or changes in mood or actions are new or worse. Call the doctor right away if any thoughts or actions of suicide occur.
- Do not give to a child younger than 12 years old. Children younger than 12 years old may have a raised chance of very bad and sometimes life-threatening high blood pressure.
Uses of Emsam:
- It is used to treat low mood (depression).
What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Emsam?
- If you have an allergy to selegiline or any other part of Emsam (selegiline transdermal system).
- If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
- If you have an adrenal gland tumor called pheochromocytoma.
- If you are using another drug that has the same drug in it.
- If you take any drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) that must not be taken with Emsam (selegiline transdermal system), like certain drugs that are used for low mood (depression) or other mood problems, pain, seizures, weight loss, and the common cold. There are many drugs that must not be taken with Emsam (selegiline transdermal system).
- If you have taken certain drugs used for low mood (depression) like isocarboxazid, phenelzine, or tranylcypromine or drugs used for Parkinson's disease like rasagiline in the last 14 days. Taking Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) within 14 days of those drugs can cause very bad high blood pressure.
- If you have taken fluoxetine within the last 5 weeks. Do not start Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) if you have taken fluoxetine within the last 5 weeks.
- If you have any of these health problems: Kidney disease or liver disease.
- If the patient is a child. This medicine is not approved for use in children.
- If you are breast-feeding. Do not breast-feed while you take Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) and for 5 days after your last dose.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with Emsam (selegiline transdermal system).
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while I take Emsam?
- Tell all of your health care providers that you take Emsam (selegiline transdermal system). This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert until you see how Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) affects you.
- To lower the chance of feeling dizzy or passing out, rise slowly if you have been sitting or lying down. Be careful going up and down stairs.
- Do not stop taking Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) all of a sudden without calling your doctor. You may have a greater risk of side effects. If you need to stop Emsam (selegiline transdermal system), you will want to slowly stop it as ordered by your doctor.
- Check blood pressure and heart rate as the doctor has told you. Talk with the doctor.
- Some foods and drinks like cheese and red wine may cause very bad and sometimes deadly effects, such as sudden high blood pressure. Talk with your doctor about your risk for these effects. Get a list of foods and drinks to avoid. Avoid these foods and drinks for at least 2 weeks after Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) is stopped.
- The chance of a type of skin cancer called melanoma may be raised in people with Parkinson's disease. It is not known if Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) may also raise the chance. Have skin exams while you take Emsam (selegiline transdermal system). Talk with your doctor.
- Avoid drinking alcohol while taking Emsam (selegiline transdermal system).
- Some people taking the oral form of Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) have fallen asleep during activities like driving, eating, or talking. Some people did not feel sleepy and felt alert right before falling asleep. This has happened up to 1 year after Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) was started. If you fall asleep during activities, do not drive or do other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert while you take Emsam (selegiline transdermal system). Call your doctor right away if this happens or you feel very sleepy.
- A very bad and sometimes deadly health problem called serotonin syndrome may happen if you take Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) with drugs for depression, migraines, or certain other drugs. Call your doctor right away if you have agitation; change in balance; confusion; hallucinations; fever; fast or abnormal heartbeat; flushing; muscle twitching or stiffness; seizures; shivering or shaking; sweating a lot; very bad diarrhea, upset stomach, or throwing up; or very bad headache.
- If you are 65 or older, use Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) with care. You could have more side effects.
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) while you are pregnant.
- Avoid use of heat sources (such as sunlamps, tanning beds, heating pads, electric blankets, heat lamps, saunas, hot tubs, heated waterbeds). Avoid long, hot baths or sunbathing. Your temperature may rise and cause too much drug to pass into your body.
How is this medicine (Emsam) best taken?
Use Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.
- To gain the most benefit, do not miss doses.
- Keep using Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) as you have been told by your doctor or other health care provider, even if you feel well.
- Put patch on at the same time of day.
- Wash your hands before and after use.
- Put patch on clean, dry, healthy skin on the chest, back, upper leg, or upper arm.
- Do not use patches that are cut or do not look right.
- Put the patch in a new area each time you change the patch.
- Clip hair at site before putting patch on. Do not shave.
- Do not put on skin that is irritated or damaged. Do not put on an area with skin folds or skin that will be rubbed by tight clothes.
- Do not put on skin where you have just used creams, oils, lotions, powder, or other skin products. The patch may not stick as well.
- Wear only one patch at a time.
- If the patch falls off, replace with a new one on a new site.
- After you take off a skin patch, be sure to fold the sticky sides of the patch to each other.
What do I do if I miss a dose?
- Put on a missed patch as soon as you think about it after taking off the old one.
- If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
- Do not put on more than 1 patch at a time.
See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)
What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?
WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
- Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
- Signs of high blood pressure like very bad headache or dizziness, passing out, or change in eyesight.
- Trouble controlling body movements, twitching, change in balance, trouble swallowing or speaking.
- Shakiness, trouble moving around, or stiffness.
- Very bad dizziness or passing out.
- Feeling confused.
- Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not there).
- Strong urges that are hard to control (such as eating, gambling, sex, or spending money).
- A skin lump or growth.
- Change in color or size of a mole.
- Muscle pain or weakness.
- Neck stiffness.
- Chest pain or pressure or a fast heartbeat.
- Slow heartbeat.
- A heartbeat that does not feel normal.
- Very upset stomach or throwing up.
- Sweating a lot.
- Larger pupils.
- If bright lights bother your eyes.
- Weakness on 1 side of the body, trouble speaking or thinking, change in balance, drooping on one side of the face, or blurred eyesight.
- Very bad irritation where Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) is used.
What are some other side effects of Emsam?
All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
- Feeling sleepy.
- Dry mouth.
- Upset stomach or throwing up.
- Not able to sleep.
- Loose stools (diarrhea).
- Nose or throat irritation.
- Back pain.
- Runny nose.
- Stuffy nose.
- Irritation where Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) is used.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
How do I store and/or throw out Emsam?
- Store at room temperature.
- Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
- Store patches in pouch until ready for use.
Consumer information use
- If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
- Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
- Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
- Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
- This medicine comes with an extra patient fact sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it with care. Read it again each time Emsam (selegiline transdermal system) is refilled. If you have any questions about Emsam (selegiline transdermal system), please talk with the doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
More about Emsam (selegiline)
- Emsam Side Effects
- During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Dosage Information
- Drug Interactions
- Support Group
- Pricing & Coupons
- En Español
- 31 Reviews
- Drug class: dopaminergic antiparkinsonism agents