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Effects of Tolcapone

In clinical studies, tolcapone (plus carbidopa-levodopa) was shown to be more effective than carbidopa-levodopa alone for Parkinson's treatment. In these studies, people who were experiencing wearing-off fluctuations of their carbidopa-levodopa therapy were given either tolcapone or a placebo (a "sugar pill" that does not contain any active ingredients) to take with each dose of carbidopa-levodopa. These studies showed that tolcapone helped the carbidopa-levodopa to work longer, with shorter "off" periods (when the medication did not work well) and longer "on" periods (when the medication did work well).
Although studies have also shown that adding tolcapone is useful for people who are not experiencing problems with wearing-off or other symptom fluctuations, tolcapone is not recommended for such people, as the risks of using the drug (especially liver failure) outweigh the potential benefits.

When and How to Take Tolcapone

General considerations for when and how to take tolcapone include the following:
  • The medication comes in tablet form. It is taken by mouth three times daily.
  • You can take tolcapone with or without food.
  • Make sure to take tolcapone at the same times each day to maintain an even level in your blood.
  • For the medication to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed. Tolcapone will not work if you stop taking it. Do not suddenly stop taking the drug without first talking to your healthcare provider.

Who Makes Tolcapone?

Tolcapone is made by Legacy Pharmaceuticals (for the 100-mg tablets) or Hoffmann-La Roche, Inc. (for the 200-mg tablets) and marketed by Valeant Pharmaceuticals North America.
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Tolcapone Drug Information

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