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Mirapex (pramipexole), also sold as Mirapex, Mirapexin, and Sifrol, is indicated for the treatment of the signs and symptoms of idiopathic Parkinson's disease and restless legs syndrome (RLS), although it is also used off-label to treat cluster headache and sexual dysfunction experienced as a side effect from the use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants.
A potentially serious side effect of taking Mirapex is falling asleep, sometimes without first feeling sleepy or receiving any other warning. One should therefore not drive a car, operate a machine, or do anything that requires one to be alert until it is known how Mirapex will affect one.
Another set of peculiar side effects reportedly associated with using Mirapex include problems with gambling, compulsive eating, and increased libido. Some of the reported cases in which these behaviors occurred were in patients who did not exhibit such behaviors prior to taking Mirapex.
These side effects are thought to be due to the drug’s preference in acting as a D3 dopamine receptor agonist. D3 receptors are heavily expressed in brain regions involved in reward and mood. It is not yet possible, however, to estimate reliably how often these behaviors may occur, or to determine the factors that contribute to them.
The most common adverse effects in people taking Mirapex for RLS are nausea and sleepiness.
The most common side effects in people taking Mirapex for Parkinson's disease are:
- dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting
- drowsiness or sleepiness
- muscle weakness
- abnormal body movements (including twitching or twisting)
Another common side effect of Mirapex use includes a change in appetite and weight.
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of taking Mirapex or another drug containing pramipexole, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact a qualified pharmaceutical injury attorney for an evaluation of your case.