Depression Home > Split Paxil CR

If you split Paxil CR tablets, the enteric coating of the tablet becomes inactive. This coating normally slows down the release of the medication from the tablet, which allows the drug to be absorbed into your system in a slow, even manner (known as controlled release). Splitting a Paxil CR tablet increases the surface area of the tablet that is dissolvable and causes the medication to be released in your stomach. It is not recommended that you split Paxil CR tablets.

Split Paxil CR: An Overview

Paxil CR® (paroxetine controlled release) is a prescription medication used for the treatment of the following conditions:
 
The manufacturer of Paxil CR does not recommend splitting, crushing, or chewing Paxil CR.
 

Can I Split Paxil CR?

It is important to understand a few things about Paxil CR tablets. First, there is an enteric coating on the outside of Paxil CR tablets. This enteric coating prevents the tablet from dissolving in the stomach. It will dissolve only once it reaches the small intestine. Many medications have enteric coatings to help protect the stomach and to prevent stomach problems.
 
Second, Paxil CR tablets use Geomatrix™ technology to control the release of the medication. Geomatrix technology involves coating part of the tablet with a special material to slow down the release of the medication from the tablet. This coating works by reducing the surface area of the tablet that is available to be dissolved. This technology allows the medication to be absorbed into your system in a slow, even manner (which is why Paxil CR tablets are "controlled release" tablets).
 
Splitting a Paxil CR tablet makes the enteric coating of the tablet inactive. When this happens, the medication is released in the stomach. Also, splitting Paxil CR tablets increases the surface area of the tablet that is available to be dissolved. Splitting Paxil CR tablets -- which will most likely make them more like regular Paxil tablets -- is not recommended. In fact, there was once a Paxil CR shortage due to problems with the tablets splitting on their own. The manufacturer was not allowed to sell the split Paxil CR tablets and was required to fix the problem.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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