Phenelzine sulphate discontinuation

The supplier of phenelzine sulphate tablets is no longer supplying this medication in New Zealand. 

Phenelzine sulphate is a monoamine oxidase inhibitor indicated for the treatment of depression. Approximately 100 patients in New Zealand are using phenelzine 15 mg tablets. 

Supplies of phenelzine 15 mg tablets ran out earlier in 2020. Phenelzine is no longer available. 

If you take phenelzine

People taking phenelzine need to talk to their health care professional about alternative treatments.

Information for prescribers

Prescribers need to:

  • ensure no new patients are started on phenelzine
  • transition patients currently on phenelzine to alternative treatments as soon as possible. 

Bpacnz has published information on the role of medicines in the management of depression in primary care which may be useful. 

What are the funded treatment options?

PHARMAC has received advice from the Mental Health Subcommittee of the Pharmacology and Therapeutics Advisory Committee (one of our expert clinical advisory groups). 

The Subcommittee advises that tranylcypromine sulphate would be an appropriate alternative MAOI for patients, however, treatment changes need to be individualised for each patient. 

General practitioners should consult with a psychiatrist regarding treatment options and transition. 

Who to contact 

If you have any questions about this change, contact PHARMAC on:

If you need to talk, call or text 1737 any time (it’s free).

Or talk to a trained counsellor on the Depression helpline, 0800 111 757