Selegiline helps prevent the breakdown of both naturally occurring dopamine and dopamine formed from levodopa, by blocking the action of monoamine oxidase type B. Selegiline is often used in addition to levodopa therapy.
Selegiline prevents the breakdown of dopamine by inhibiting the activity of the enzyme monoamine oxidase B (MAO-B), an enzyme that metabolizes or breaks down dopamine in the brain.
Initially it was hoped that selegiline might reduce the rate at which Parkinson’s Disease progresses, but this now appears not to be the case. Selegiline also has a slight anti-depressant effect.
Toxic reactions have occurred in some patients who took selegiline with the narcotic drug demerol. Selegiline can also cause the following side-effects:
- Dry mouth
- on rare occasions, confusion, nightmares, hallucinations, and headache
If you experience these or any other side-effects, discuss them with your doctor. It may be necessary to change the dosage of your medication or change to another medication which may be more suitable for you.