Carbidopa (kar-bi-DOE-pa), Levodopa (lee-voe-DOE-pa)
Treats symptoms of Parkinson's disease and parkinsonism, such as shaking, stiffness, and slow movement.
Parcopa, Sinemet 10-100, Sinemet 25-100, Sinemet 25-250, Sinemet CR
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 levodopa or carbidopa, or if you have narrow-angle glaucoma (high pressure in your eyes). You should not use this medicine if you have melanoma (skin cancer), or if you have had melanoma in the past.
How to Use This Medicine
Tablet, Long Acting Tablet, Dissolving Tablet
- Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
- Do not chew or crush the extended-release tablet. Swallow it whole with a full glass of water.
- If you are using the disintegrating tablet, make sure your hands are dry before you handle the tablet. Remove the tablet from the bottle and put it on your tongue right away. It should melt quickly. After the tablet has melted, swallow or take a sip of water.
If a dose is missed:
- If you miss a dose, or forget to take your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If the time for your next dose is less than 2 hours away, 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.
- Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.
- Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
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 also using other Parkinson medicines, such as levodopa, or if you have used one recently. Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using any monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) medicine, such as Eldepryl®, Marplan®, Nardil®, or Parnate®.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using a medicine to treat depression, such as amitriptyline, doxepin, nortriptyline, Elavil®, Pamelor®, or Sinequan®. Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using haloperidol, metoclopramide, prochlorperazine, risperidone, Compazine®, Haldol®, Phenergan®, Reglan®, Risperdal®, or Thorazine®. These medicines can be used to treat severe vomiting, psychiatric problems, or other conditions.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using isoniazid (Nydrazid®), papaverine, or phenytoin (Dilantin®). Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using medicine to lower your blood pressure. Some blood pressure medicines are atenolol, hydrochlorothiazide, lisinopril, metoprolol, quinapril, Accupril®, Cozaar®, Diovan®, Lotrel®, Norvasc®, Toprol®, and Zestril®.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using any mineral supplements or multivitamins with iron. Eating high-protein foods, such as meat, fish, poultry, eggs, cheese, beans, or milk, while you are using this medicine may cause it not to work as well. Carefully follow your doctor's instructions about any special diet.
Warnings While Using This Medicine
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breast feeding. Make sure your doctor knows if you have asthma, emphysema or other lung problems or breathing problems. Make sure your doctor knows if you have heart problems, or if you have liver disease or kidney disease. Tell your doctor if you have ever experienced symptoms of neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) in the past.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you have endocrine problems, such as hyperthyroidism (too much thyroid hormone), hypothyroid (not enough thyroid hormone), adrenal gland disease, or diabetes. Make sure your doctor knows if you have stomach ulcers, or if you have mental problems. Make sure your doctor knows if you have glaucoma (high pressure in your eyes).
- This medicine contains phenylalanine. Make sure your doctor knows if you have phenylketonuria (PKU).
- 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.
- This medicine may make you drowsy. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert. To avoid dizziness from this medicine, stand up slowly from a sitting or lying position.
- Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using this medicine. This medicine may affect the results of certain medical tests.
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.
- Chest pain, fast or uneven heartbeat.
- Feeling unusually sad, suicidal thoughts (wanting to hurt yourself).
- Fever, sweating, confusion, irregular heartbeat, muscle stiffness.
- Trouble urinating, change in how much or how often you urinate.
- Severe nausea or vomiting.
- Unusual behavior, mood changes, seeing or hearing things that are not there.
- Uncontrolled or jerky body movement, or eyelid twitch.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
- Blurred vision.
- Changes in sexual desire.
- Back pain or shoulder pain.
- Constipation, diarrhea.
- Dizziness or lightheadedness when getting up from lying or sitting positions, fainting.
- Feeling unusually confused, nervous, or upset.
- Loss of appetite, mild nausea or vomiting, stomach pain, dry mouth, funny or bad taste.
- Numbness or tingling in your hands or feet.
- Pink or red colored urine, dark colored sweat or saliva, heavy sweating.
- Trouble sleeping, or sleeping too much, nightmares.