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What Is the Selegiline Transdermal Patch Used For?

The Selegiline Transdermal Patch and Tyramine

There are also monoamine oxidase enzymes (particularly MAO-A) in the digestive tract, and these enzymes are responsible for breaking down tyramine, a naturally occurring chemical (found in many foods and beverages) that affects blood pressure. MAOI medications stop the body's ability to break down tyramine and can cause a person's tyramine levels to become too high (which can be extremely dangerous).
While most MAOIs block the action of monoamine oxidase in the digestive tract (because they are taken by mouth), the selegiline transdermal patch (when used at the lowest dose, 6 mg) has little effect on digestive monoamine oxidase, since it is absorbed into the skin through a patch. However, higher doses of the selegiline transdermal patch may be more likely to interact with tyramine-rich foods. Because tyramine is found in many foods and beverages, people taking higher doses of the selegiline transdermal patch must follow a strict diet (see Emsam Food Interactions for more information).

The Use of the Selegiline Transdermal Patch in Children and Teens

The selegiline transdermal patch is not recommended for use in people younger than 18 years old, as it has not been thoroughly studied in children or teens. Antidepressants have been shown to increase the risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior in short-term research studies involving children and teenagers (see Emsam and Suicide for more information on the risks of suicide with the selegiline transdermal patch). Talk with your healthcare provider about treatment options for childhood or teen depression.
Children under the age of 12 years old should never take the selegiline transdermal patch under any circumstances. Even the smallest available dose is too high for such children, and dangerous side effects could occur.
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Selegiline Transdermal Patch (Emsam)

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