Compare Cymbalta vs. lidocaine

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

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Improves mood and relieves certain types of pain.

Cymbalta (duloxetine) is good for treating depression, anxiety, and some forms of chronic pain, but it is more likely than other antidepressants to cause problems if you drink alcohol or have high blood pressure.

3.6/ 5 average rating with 496 reviewsforCymbalta
Treats nerve pain.

Lidoderm (lidocaine) works well to treat nerve pain that is localized to a small area, but its topical application may cause minor skin irritation.

4.2/ 5 average rating with 18 reviewsforlidocaine
Upsides
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine) may help relieve nerve pain from diabetes and other forms of chronic pain.
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine) has several uses, which may be good for people with multiple conditions.
  • Available as a generic, which is cheaper.
  • Minimal side-effects compared to other pain relievers since it works locally at the site of application.
  • Won't hurt your kidneys or liver unlike other pain relievers.
  • Available in many different topical formulations to fit your needs.
Downsides
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine) may not be a good option if you're a heavy drinker, or have liver or kidney problems.
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine) can increase high blood pressure.
  • Like most antidepressants, Cymbalta (duloxetine) can cause higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior for people aged 24 and younger.
  • Application may cause minor stinging or burning skin irritation.
  • Used patches requires proper medication disposal since it still contain enough medicine to be dangerous to children and pets.
  • Not a good choice if you've had allergic reactions to numbing medications (local anesthetics) or have a history of irregular heartbeats.
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Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Cream
  • Gel
  • Ointment
  • Jelly
  • Spray
  • Patch
  • Lotion
  • Topical solution
Price
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Reviews
496 reviews so far
58%
saidit'sworth it
49%
saiditworked well
24%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Cymbalta (duloxetine)?

Leave a review
18 reviews so far
67%
saidit'sworth it
72%
saiditworked well
22%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Lidoderm (lidocaine)?

Leave a review
Side effects
12possible side effects
  • Nausea
    23%
  • Headache
    14%
  • Dry mouth
    13%
  • Drowsiness
    10%
  • Fatigue
    9%
  • Difficulty sleeping
    9%
  • Constipation
    9%
  • Dizziness
    9%
  • Diarrhea
    9%
  • Decreased appetite
    7%
  • Excessive sweating
    6%
  • Abdominal pain
    5%
See more detailed side effects
The Lidoderm (lidocaine) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and risk factors
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
    • Age 24 years or younger
  • Serotonin syndrome
    • Taking tricyclic antidepressants, lithium, tramadol, fentanyl, amphetamines, certain headache medications (triptans), St. John's Wort
  • Withdrawal
    • Stopping Cymbalta (duloxetine) abruptly
  • Increased bleeding
    • Taking other blood-thinning drugs (including aspirin, NSAIDs such as Advil, warfarin)
  • Changes in blood pressure and risk of falls
    • Elderly patients
    • History of gait disturbances
    • Taking more than 60 mg of Cymbalta (duloxetine) daily
    • Taking other medicines that lower blood pressure
    • History of high blood pressure
  • Bipolar disorder
    • History of bipolar disorder
    • At risk for bipolar disorder
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Overdose
    • Use of heating pad on skin
    • Applying patch to red, irritated or broken skin
    • Leaving patch on for more than 12 hours
    • Using patch on a very large area
    • Older age
    • Smaller patients
    • Liver disease
  • Accidental poisoning
    • Not disposing of Lidoderm (lidocaine) correctly
  • Eye irritation
    • Not washing hands after touching or applying Lidoderm (lidocaine)
  • Skin reactions
    • Applying Lidoderm (lidocaine) to warm skin
    • Covering patch with wrap or heating pad
  • Heart problems
    • History of heart problems
    • Using Lidoderm (lidocaine) with medications to treat irregular heartbeat
See more detailed risks and warnings