What side effects does Milnacipran (Savella) cause?

Savella (milnacipran), a medication prescribed to treat fibromyalgia, can cause side effects ranging from bothersome to life-threatening.

Most serious is the increased risk of suicidal thoughts or actions, especially in young adults, teenagers and children. Call your doctor right away if you are taking Savella and have suicidal thoughts, act aggressively or violently, have panic attacks, feel restless or hyperactive, anxious, irritable, hostile or impulsive, have trouble sleeping, are more active or talk more than normal or notice any signs of a worsening mood or behavior.

Another life-threatening reaction to Savella is serotonin syndrome, a condition in which your body makes too much of the brain chemical serotonin. Signs of this serious reaction include agitation, hallucination, loss of consciousness, twitching muscles or stiffness, racing heartbeat, high or low blood pressure, sweating, fever, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.
Less dangerous but more common side effects of Savella include nausea, headache, constipation, hot flushes (feeling of extreme facial warmth or reddening), vomiting, excessive sweating, dry mouth, fast or pounding heartbeat, dizziness, high blood pressure, stomach pain, sexual problems, diarrhea and indigestion. If you experience any side effects from Savella, call your doctor. Do not stop taking Savella without talking to your doctor first. Stopping the medicine suddenly may cause withdrawal symptoms.

Other possible serious side effects of Savella include:
  • symptoms of allergic reaction, including trouble breathing, rash or hives, joint pain or swelling of the face
  • signs of low sodium (salt) levels in the blood, including headache, weakness or feeling unsteady, mental confusion or memory problems
  • pain in the upper right stomach
  • yellowing of skin or eyes
  • flu-like symptoms
  • black tarry or red blood in stools
  • bloody vomit
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • seizures
Call your doctor right away if you experience any of these symptoms.

Based on information from, a free medication monitoring service, 48% of patients experience side effects while taking Milnacipran (Savella). Some of the side effects reported by iGuard members include: Sweating, Drowsiness, Weight Gain, Insomnia, and Headache. Please follow up with your doctor or other healthcare provider if you are experiencing any symptoms that worsen or do not go away.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.