Reviewed on 5/17/2023

What Is Cabergoline and How Does It Work?

Cabergoline is a prescription medication used to treat hyperprolactinemia.

  • Cabergoline is available under the following different brand name: Dostinex.

What Are Dosages of Cabergoline?

Adult dosage


  • 0.5mg


Adult dosage

  • Initiate: 0.25 mg orally twice weekly
  • May increase by 0.25mg every 4 weeks (or longer) up to 1 mg twice weekly

Dosage Considerations – Should be Given as Follows: 

  • See "Dosages."

What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Cabergoline?

Common side effects of Cabergoline include:

  • nausea, 
  • vomiting, 
  • stomach pain, 
  • constipation, 
  • weakness, 
  • tiredness, 
  • headache, 
  • dizziness, 
  • drowsiness,
  • hot flashes,
  • dry mouth,
  • depressed mood, and
  • numbness or tingly feeling

Serious side effects of Cabergoline include:

  • hives, 
  • difficulty breathing, 
  • swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat, 
  • shortness of breath, 
  • chest pain, 
  • dry cough or hack, 
  • lightheadedness
  • pain in the side or lower back, 
  • little or no urination, 
  • swelling in ankles or feet, 
  • increased unusual urges (sexual, gambling, or other intense urges),
  • breast pain,
  • vision changes, and
  • painful menses

Rare side effects of Cabergoline include:

  • none 

This is not a complete list of side effects and other serious side effects or health problems may occur as a result of the use of this drug. Call your doctor for medical advice about serious side effects or adverse reactions. You may report side effects or health problems to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What Other Drugs Interact with Cabergoline?

If your medical doctor is using this medicine to treat your pain, your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor, health care provider or pharmacist first.

  • Cabergoline has severe interactions with at least 14 other drugs.
  • Cabergoline has serious interactions with at least 71 other drugs.
  • Cabergoline has moderate interactions with the following drugs:
  • Cabergoline has minor interactions with no other drugs.

This information does not contain all possible interactions or adverse effects. Visit the RxList Drug Interaction Checker for any drug interactions. Therefore, before using this drug, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the drugs you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist. Check with your physician if you have health questions or concerns.

What Are Warnings and Precautions for Cabergoline?


  • Uncontrolled hypertension
  • Hypersensitivity to ergot derivatives
  • Severe hepatic disease
  • Concurrent use with D2 antagonists
  • History of pulmonary, pericardial, or retroperitoneal fibrotic disorders
  • Women planning to nurse
  • History of cardiac valvular disorders as suggested by anatomical evidence of valvulopathy of any valve, determined by pretreatment evaluation including echocardiographic demonstration of valve leaflet thickening, valve restriction, or mixed valve restriction-stenosis

Effects of drug abuse

  • None

Short-Term Effects

  • See “What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Cabergoline?”

Long-Term Effects

  • See “What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Cabergoline?”


  • Initial doses over 1 mg may produce orthostatic hypotension
  • Concomitant antihypertensives
  • May cause somnolence; avoid performing tasks that require mental alertness
  • Reportedly can cause cardiac damage
  • May cause orthostatic hypotension; avoid concurrent use with antihypertensives
  • Rare cases of retroperitoneal fibrosis reported
  • Hepatic impairment
  • Inhibits lactation
  • Impulse control/compulsive behaviors reported in patients receiving therapy; this has been generally reversible upon reduction of dose or treatment discontinuation; prescribers should consider dose reduction or stopping medication if a patient develops such urges while receiving therapy
  • Valvular disease
    • All patients should undergo a cardiovascular evaluation, including echocardiogram to assess the potential presence of valvular disease; if valvular disease is detected, the patient should not be treated with cabergoline
    • Following treatment initiation, clinical and diagnostic monitoring (for example, chest x-ray, CT scan and cardiac echocardiogram) should be conducted to assess the risk of cardiac valvulopathy
    • Discontinue if an echocardiogram reveals new valvular regurgitation, valvular restriction or valve leaflet thickening

Pregnancy and Lactation

  • Use may be acceptable in pregnancy
  • Excretion in milk is unknown; not recommended.
Medscape. Cabergoline.

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors