Desyrel generically known as Trazodone is a prescription antidepressant medication used to treat depression and anxiety. It belongs to a class of medications known as serotonin modulators. It works by restoring balance in neurotransmitters that regulate mood.
Trazodone is an antidepressant medication commonly prescribed to treat depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions. It may help improve your mood, appetite, and energy level and decrease anxiety and insomnia related to depression. Desyrel has been around for over 30 years and is one of the most widely prescribed antidepressants in the United States.
Uses and Dosage
Trazodone comes in the form of an oral tablet and is usually prescribed to be taken once or twice daily, depending on the advice of your doctor. The tablet should be taken with a meal or snack, and it is best to take it at bedtime. When taking the tablet, it should be swallowed whole with a glass of water.
The recommended dosage of Trazodone to start is 150 mg per day, divided into two or more doses. This dose can be increased gradually by 50 mg every 3-4 days, considering the patient’s response and any signs of intolerance. If drowsiness is experienced, it is recommended to give most of the daily dose at bedtime or reduce it.
For outpatients, the maximum daily dose should not exceed 400 mg, while inpatients (severely depressed patients) may receive up to 600 mg per day in divided doses. Once an adequate response is achieved, the dosage should be gradually reduced, and further adjustments should be based on the patient’s therapeutic response.
Common Side Effects of Trazodone:
- Stomach upset or abdominal pain
- Facial flushing
Serious Side Effects of Trazodone:
- Severe drowsiness
- Loss of appetite
- Persistent vomiting
- Severe headache
- Muscle spasm
- Sudden weight gain
- Slow or shallow breathing
- Loss of consciousness
- Mental or mood changes
Form and strength
Desyrel (Trazodone) is available in the following forms and strength:
Trazodone: Scored Tablet
- 50 mg
- 100 mg
- 200 mg
- Before using Desyrel, disclose your medical history to your physician, including: history of suicide attempts, bipolar disorder, heart disease, kidney problems, liver disorders, blood pressure abnormalities, and glaucoma; any prescription, nonprescription, and herbal products (e.g., St. John’s Wort).
- If you have an allergy to trazodone, nefazodone, or any inactive ingredients it may contain, do not take it. Signs of hypersensitivity include severe dizziness, swelling of the face and neck, skin rashes, hives, and breathing difficulty; if any of these occur, discontinue the antidepressant, and seek emergency medical help.
- Trazodone can cause adverse effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, and blurred vision, which may be worsened by alcohol consumption. Avoid alcohol while taking this medication, and practice caution when engaging in activities that require alertness and clear vision, such as driving and using machinery.
- Pregnant or breastfeeding mothers should only use Trazodone if the potential benefits outweigh the potential risks. Remember, the risks should always be considered before taking this medication.
- Trazodone can cause a condition called QT prolongation, which can rarely lead to serious (and potentially fatal) irregular heartbeat and other symptoms such as severe dizziness and fainting and requires immediate medical attention.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is trazodone a first-choice medication for treating depression?
No, according to the American Psychiatric Association, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are the first-line treatment for major depressive disorder. Trazodone may be used as an alternative for those who do not respond to SSRIs.
Are there any contraindications for taking trazodone?
Yes, trazodone should not be taken by people with a known hypersensitivity to it or any of its inactive ingredients. Additionally, it should not be taken by people taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) or thioridazine.
Is there any risk of drug interactions with trazodone?
Yes, trazodone can interact with other medications, so it is important to discuss any other medications being taken with a healthcare provider.
How long will it take for Desyrel to improve my symptoms?
It may take one week to one month for this drug to improve your symptoms.