Effexor (Venlafaxine Hydrochloride)
Generic equivalents for Effexor...What are generics?
(Rx) - indicates only available by prescription
To comply with Canadian International Pharmacy Association regulations you are permitted to order a 3-month supply or the closest package size available based on your personal prescription. read more
Venlafaxine Hydrochloride Information
VENLAFAXINE (VEN la fax een) is used to treat depression, anxiety and panic disorder.
This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.Read more...
Effexor® is used to treat symptoms associated with depression, general anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, and panic disorder. Effexor® is in a class of medicines known as serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, or SNRIs.
SNRI medicines are believed to work by increasing the levels of two main chemicals in the brain, serotonin and norepinephrine. These chemicals are important in sending and receiving messages through a complex communication pathway in the brain.
Effexor® works to increase the levels of both serotonin and norepinephrine in pathways that are important in treating feelings of sadness and depression, general anxiety, social anxiety, and panic symptoms.
Be aware that Effexor® can cause unwanted side effects, especially when combined with other drugs that work in a similar way. In addition to similar antidepressant medicines, many other types of medicines impact the levels of chemicals in the brain.
In some people, taking a medicine like Effexor® can cause an increase in depression, including suicidal thoughts and actions. This most often happens during the first few months of treatment, when the dose is changed, and in children, teenagers, and young adults.
A possible serious side effect that can be caused by Effexor® is called serotonin syndrome. People that take Effexor® along with medicines called monoamine oxidase inhibitors, or MAOIs, are at the greatest risk of developing serotonin syndrome.
Taking other drugs that cause changes in serotonin can also cause this syndrome to occur. See the sections on "What should I watch for" and "What side effects might be noticed" to see more information about serotonin syndrome.
Medicines like Effexor® should never be stopped suddenly. Your body adjusts to the effects of the medicine. Stopping the medicine suddenly can cause unwanted symptoms. If you feel this medicine is not right for you, work with your doctor to gradually reduce the dose to avoid problems.
Sexual side effects are possible with Effexor®. Sexual side effects may cause people to consider stopping the medicine on their own. Talk to your doctor if you experience a decrease in sex drive or other problems with sexual activity. Options to help are available.
Be patient. It may take several weeks for the medicine to help with your symptoms. Keep in touch with your doctor during this time. After several weeks, your doctor may adjust your dose to provide the best results for your condition.
Take your dose of Effexor® exactly as prescribed and at about the same time each day. This medicine comes in a tablet form and an extended release capsule form called Effexor XR®. Swallow the capsule whole without opening, chewing, or crushing it. Take your Effexor® dose with food.
If you are taking a tablet form of this medicine, one that is not an extended release formulation, it may be possible to break or crush the tablets. Talk to your pharmacist to be sure.
Each prescription of Effexor® comes with a printed medication guide. Always take time to read the medication information in the guide provided by your online Canadian Prescription Referral Service to be sure you are reviewing the most recent information.
A less expensive and safe generic alternative to Effexor may be available. Generic forms of Effexor, known as venlafaxine, are available in both the short acting tablet and the longer acting extended-release capsule form. By using a Canadian Prescription Referral Service, we can help you find a licensed Canadian or international pharmacy that can provide you with safe generic products and the best possible dollar savings. As an added safety measure, we recommend purchasing your medicines from a pharmacy that is a member of the Canadian International Pharmacy Association. Visit a website called PharmacyChecker to locate licensed and credible pharmacies.
They need to know if you have any of these conditions: -bleeding disorders -glaucoma -heart disease -high blood pressure -high cholesterol -kidney disease -liver disease -low levels of sodium in the blood -mania or bipolar disorder -seizures -suicidal thoughts, plans, or attempt; a previous suicide attempt by you or a family -take medicines that treat or prevent blood clots -thyroid disease -an unusual or allergic reaction to venlafaxine, desvenlafaxine, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives -pregnant or trying to get pregnant -breast-feedingRead more...
Medical problems may affect the way Effexor® works in your body. Your doctor needs to know about every medical condition or problem you have to determine the best treatment for you. Talk to your doctor about all your medical conditions even if you think they are not related to the reason you are taking Effexor®.
Tell your doctor if you have ever had problems with any of the conditions mentioned in the above list. Your doctor may want to adjust your dose or monitor your condition differently.
As with most medicines, interactions with other substances, including medicines prescribed by other doctors, over-the-counter products, vitamins, herbal supplements, alcohol use, and smoking, can be dangerous. Give your doctor a complete list of everything you take.
Before ordering your Effexor® online, be sure all your doctors and healthcare providers are aware that you are taking Effexor®. Your doctors need to know in order to prevent possible serious interactions with other medicines and medical conditions.
Take this medicine by mouth with a glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Take it with food. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed. Do not stop taking this medicine suddenly except upon the advice of your doctor. Stopping this medicine too quickly may cause serious side effects or your condition may worsen. A special MedGuide will be given to you by the pharmacist with each prescription and refill. Be sure to read this information carefully each time. Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once. NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications: -certain medicines for fungal infections like fluconazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole, posaconazole, voriconazole -cisapride -desvenlafaxine -dofetilide -dronedarone -duloxetine -levomilnacipran -linezolid -MAOIs like Carbex, Eldepryl, Marplan, Nardil, and Parnate -methylene blue (injected into a vein) -milnacipran -pimozide -thioridazine -ziprasidone This medicine may also interact with the following medications: -aspirin and aspirin-like medicines -certain medicines for depression, anxiety, or psychotic disturbances -certain medicines for migraine headaches like almotriptan, eletriptan, frovatriptan, naratriptan, rizatriptan, sumatriptan, zolmitriptan -certain medicines for sleep -certain medicines that treat or prevent blood clots like dalteparin, enoxaparin, warfarin -cimetidine -clozapine -diuretics -fentanyl -furazolidone -indinavir -isoniazid -lithium -metoprolol -NSAIDS, medicines for pain and inflammation, like ibuprofen or naproxen -other medicines that prolong the QT interval (cause an abnormal heart rhythm) -procarbazine -rasagiline -supplements like St. John's wort, kava kava, valerian -tramadol -tryptophan
This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.Read more...
Combining Effexor® with drugs that act as MAOIs can cause serious and life-threatening conditions. Medicines that interact with Effexor® in other ways can also lead to serious problems. More information about some of the medicines mentioned in the above list is provided here. This is not a complete list.
- Zyvox (linezolid)
- Azilect (rasagiline mesylate)
- Eldepryl (selegiline hydrochloride)
- Zelapar (selegiline hydrochloride)
- Nardil (phenelzine sulfate)
- Parnate (tranylcypromine sulfate)
- Mellaril (thioridazine hydrochloride)
- Geodon (ziprasidone)
Combining Effexor® with medicines that increase levels of serotonin in the brain can cause serious and life-threatening problems, including serotonin syndrome. Other medicines can alter a part of your heartbeat called the QT interval. This interaction can also be very serious. In some cases, your doctor may prescribe a medicine listed here in addition to your Effexor®.
Be sure your doctor is aware that you are taking Effexor®. Your doctor may adjust the dose of one, or both, medicines.
This is not a complete list of all drugs that increase serotonin or alter the heart rhythm. If you are taking a medicine that you think is similar to the medicines listed here, talk to your doctor about the combination.
- BuSpar (buspirone hydrochloride)
- Matulane (procarbazine hydrochloride)
- Metozolv (metoclopramide hydrochloride)
- Persantine (dipyridamole)
- Cordarone (amiodarone hydrochloride)
- Eskalith (lithium carbonate)
Antidepressant medicines, including selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, tricyclic antidepressants, and others, can cause serotonin syndrome when combined with Effexor®. Do not take medicines like these along with your Effexor®. Many drugs fall within the group of antidepressant medicines. Only a few are listed here. Talk to your doctor if you think you are taking a medicine similar to those listed here.
- Prosax (fluoxetine hydrochloride)
- Lexapro (escitalopram oxylate)
- Zoloft (sertraline hydrochloride)
- Paxil (paroxetine hydrochloride)
- Luvox (fluvoxamine maleate)
- Brintellix (vortioxetine)
- Elavil (amitriptyline hydrochloride)
- Tofranil (imipramine hydrochloride)
- Anafranil (clomipramine hydrochloride)
- Sinequan (doxepin hydrochloride)
- Desyrel (trazodone hydrochloride)
- Remeron (mirtazapine)
Medicines commonly used to treat migraine headaches, called triptans, also have an effect on serotonin levels. Combining triptans with Effexor® can increase serotonin levels too much in some people and cause serotonin syndrome. Talk to your doctor about taking both medicines together if you suffer from migraine headaches. Some examples of triptans are listed here.
- Axert (almotriptan maleate)
- Imitrex (sumatriptan succinate)
- Zomig (zolmitriptan)
- Amerge (naratriptan hydrochloride)
- Frova (frovatriptan succinate)
Some drug interactions can be life-threatening. Other interactions can cause unwanted side effects or make the medicines more or less effective. Sometimes drug interactions can cause a medicine to exceed safe levels in the blood, similar to taking an overdose. This can happen all at once or gradually over time. A drug interaction happens when one drug causes another drug to change how it works in the body.
Many processes are at work in your body that handle drugs. Interactions can happen at different places and for different reasons. Some processes involve how your gut absorbs the medicine, others involve the way your liver works to alter medicines. Some interactions occur at the exact place in your body where the drugs connect to do their job, and others involve changes with the way the drug is eliminated from your body.
Effexor® is no exception. There are many medicines that interact with the active ingredient found in Effexor®. Always check with your doctor or pharmacist to be sure you are not taking drugs that interact.
Each time you have a new drug added to your existing list of medications, be sure to ask your pharmacist to check it against all your other medicines.
Provide your online Canadian Pharmacy Referral Service with a complete list of your medications. For your safety, the pharmacists will review your current medications, along with all new medicines being filled, for any possible drug interactions. Provide a list for your pharmacists of everything you take including prescription medicines, over-the-counter drugs, vitamins and supplements, and herbal preparations.
Tell your doctor if your symptoms do not get better or if they get worse. Visit your doctor or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. Because it may take several weeks to see the full effects of this medicine, it is important to continue your treatment as prescribed by your doctor. Patients and their families should watch out for new or worsening thoughts of suicide or depression. Also watch out for sudden changes in feelings such as feeling anxious, agitated, panicky, irritable, hostile, aggressive, impulsive, severely restless, overly excited and hyperactive, or not being able to sleep. If this happens, especially at the beginning of treatment or after a change in dose, call your health care professional. This medicine can cause an increase in blood pressure. Check with your doctor for instructions on monitoring your blood pressure while taking this medicine. You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medicine affects you. Do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. This reduces the risk of dizzy or fainting spells. Alcohol may interfere with the effect of this medicine. Avoid alcoholic drinks. Your mouth may get dry. Chewing sugarless gum, sucking hard candy and drinking plenty of water will help. Contact your doctor if the problem does not go away or is severe.Read more...
As with any new medicine, watch for signs of an allergic reaction. Symptoms can include swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat, difficulty breathing, tightening of the chest, and a skin rash, itching, or hives.
Serotonin syndrome is a serious and life-threatening condition that is possible when taking Effexor®, especially when combined with another medicine that works in a similar way.
Symptoms of serotonin syndrome usually begin within a few hours of taking a new medicine, taking a higher dose of your medicine, or adding a medicine to your existing drugs. Watch for the symptoms listed here. Severe cases of serotonin syndrome can be life-threatening. Seek emergency medical care if you experience any of the following:
- high fever
- irregular pulse or heartbeat
- loss of consciousness
Less severe cases still warrant immediate medical attention. Symptoms can include the following:
- agitation or a feeling of restlessness
- confusion or hallucinations
- rapid pulse rate
- an increase or decrease in blood pressure
- dilated pupils
- difficulty with muscle movements, muscle twitching, tremor, or very stiff muscles
- sweating, shivering, fever, or goose bumps
- diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting
- headache or dizziness
Watch for changes in your mood that may be a warning sign of mania. Let your doctor know if you feel more anxious, agitated, jittery or restless, have trouble sleeping, become more talkative, or experience a noticeable increase in energy level.
Effexor® can cause you to bruise or bleed more easily. Let your doctor know if this happens.
Also watch for changes in your vision. Let your doctor know if this occurs.
Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible: -allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue -breathing problems -changes in vision -seizures -suicidal thoughts or other mood changes -trouble passing urine or change in the amount of urine -unusual bleeding or bruising Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome): -change in sex drive or performance -constipation -increased sweating -loss of appetite -nausea -tremors -weight loss
This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.Read more...
Let your doctor know as soon as possible if you experience any of the following changes. Sudden and serious changes warrant immediate medical attention.
- feeling like taking action on suicidal thoughts
- thoughts about dying
- new or worsened feelings of anxiety or panic
- new or worsened feelings of depression
- feeling agitated, angry, irritable, or restless
- feeling a sudden increase in energy, or becoming more active and talkative
- eye pain or swelling or redness in your eye area
- dilated pupils
- difficulty sleeping
Let your doctor know if you experience any of the following changes. The symptoms listed here could be signs of serotonin syndrome and warrant immediate medical attention.
- irregular pulse or heartbeat
- loss of consciousness
- agitation or restlessness
- confusion or feeling disoriented
- changes in blood pressure, either an increase or decrease
- difficulty with muscle movements, twitching, tremor, or very stiff muscles
- unusual sweating, shivering, or goose bumps
- sudden stomach upset like diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting
- headache or dizziness
Keep out of the reach of children. Store at a controlled temperature between 20 and 25 degrees C (68 and 77 degrees F), in a dry place. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.
NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.
Venlafaxine Hydrochloride Oral tablet