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Venlafaxine, also known as Effexor, is a commonly prescribed antidepressant medication used to treat major depressive disorder, anxiety disorders, and panic disorder. It belongs to a class of drugs known as serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs).
Venlafaxine is often prescribed to improve mood, reduce feelings of sadness and hopelessness, and help people feel more energetic. It works by increasing the levels of chemicals including serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain that regulate mood and emotions.
Venlafaxine may be used as part of combination therapy. It can be used with other medications to treat your condition. Generally, it takes approximately 4 to 6 weeks for Venlafaxine to take full effect, though most individuals may start to experience improvement in symptoms after 1 to 2 weeks.
Uses and Dosage
Venlafaxine is available in both immediate-release and extended-release forms, both of which are available as generic medications. It comes in the form of tablets which must be swallowed whole without crushing, chewing, breaking them down, or opening them. The dosage of the medication should be determined based on the individual's medical condition and response to treatment.
The dosage for people who have depression is recommended to take 75 mg total per day, taken in two or three divided doses. If needed, your doctor may increase your dosage to 150 mg per day. However, if you have more severe depression, your doctor may prescribe a dosage as high as 375 mg per day, taken in three divided doses Immediate-release oral tablets case:
In the case of Extended-release oral tablets 75 mg per day is enough to be taken in a single dose in the morning or evening. Some patients should start at a lower dosage of 37.5 mg per day for 4–7 days. If needed, your doctor may increase your dosage. They may increase it every 4 days by 75 mg until you reach 225 mg per day.
For people suffering from social anxiety disorder 75 mg per day, given in a single dose in the morning or evening. Venlafaxine should not be used in people younger than 18 years of age.
Common side effects of venlafaxine may include:
- Blurred vision
- Changes in weight or appetite
- Dry mouth
- Fast heartbeats
- Feeling anxious, nervous, or jittery
- Headache or dizziness
- Drowsiness or tiredness
- Increased sweating
- Nausea or vomiting
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Sexual problems
- Sleep problems or unusual dreams
Venlafaxine may cause serious side effects.
- A seizure (convulsions)
- Aggressive or violent behavior
- Agitation, restlessness, anger, or irritability
- Blurred vision or seeing halos around lights
- Eye pain or redness
- Cough, chest tightness, or trouble breathing
- Low blood sodium - headache, confusion, problems with thinking or memory, weakness, feeling unsteady
- Severe nervous system reaction
- The whites of your eyes or skin turn yellow
- Thoughts about suicide or dying
- Unusual bleeding - nosebleeds, bleeding gums, abnormal vaginal bleeding
- You cough up blood or have blood in your pee
Form and strength
The Generic Alternatives Effexor (Venlafaxine) comes in the following form and strength:
- 25 mg
- 75 mg
- 100 mg
- You should know that venlafaxine may cause high blood pressure. You should have your blood pressure checked before starting treatment and regularly while you are taking this medication.
- Venlafaxine may cause an increase in heart rate or an irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia), thus it may not be an appropriate treatment if you are already taking medications to manage your cardiac health.
- Taking venlafaxine in the last month of pregnancy may slightly increase your risk of bleeding after delivery. However, because this side-effect is rare, it's not a reason to stop taking venlafaxine for most pregnant women.
- It is advised to abstain from consuming alcohol while taking Venlafaxine due to the potential for increased sedation. This can lead to impairments in the ability to make decisions, think clearly, and react quickly.
- Patients with preexisting liver or kidney disease may be prone to an increased accumulation of this drug within the body due to reduced metabolic clearance. As such, caution should be exercised when prescribing this medication in such individuals.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How long can you stay on Venlafaxine?
Once you're feeling better it's likely that you will continue to take venlafaxine for several more months. Most doctors recommend that you take antidepressants for 6 months to 1 year after you no longer feel depressed. Stopping before that time can make depression come back.
How does venlafaxine make you feel at first?
You can feel drowsy in the first few days of taking venlafaxine. This should get better after the first week or two. You could also, strangely, get insomnia (difficulty getting to sleep), and disturbing dreams or nightmares.
What is the success rate of venlafaxine?
Venlafaxine-XR demonstrated a 73.7% success rate, which was statistically significantly greater than that of the studied SSRIs (61.1%) and TCAs (57.9%) (P<0.001).
It's important to purchase Effexor from verified Canadian pharmacy.