EFFEXOR XR is known as an SNRI (serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor) and is believed to help treat depression and the associated symptoms of anxiety by affecting the level of two chemicals in the brain-serotonin and norepinephrine. These two chemicals are thought to play a key role in depression and the associated symptoms of anxiety. Correcting the imbalance of these two chemicals may help relieve depression symptoms and the associated symptoms of anxiety-which can be a positive step toward getting your life back.
What about weight gain or jitteriness? In studies with EFFEXOR XR, there was a low incidence of weight gain or jitteriness (agitation).
Try to be patient about the treatment process. Just as depression, generalized anxiety disorder, and social anxiety disorder do not happen overnight, it takes time to feel better. It usually takes 6 to 8 weeks to feel the full benefits of EFFEXOR XR. Results may vary among individuals. But the best way to ensure that you return to feeling like yourself again is to take your medication every day, as instructed by your doctor.
The goal is to reduce or virtually eliminate your symptoms and get back to your life again. If symptoms of depression and associated symptoms of anxiety are interfering with your life, and you’re not where you want to be, ask your doctor about EFFEXOR XR, a treatment option that may help you get back to doing your favorite activities again.
Important Safety Information
Before starting EFFEXORreg; XR (venlafaxine HCl), tell your doctor about any medicines you’re taking, including over-the-counter drugs and herbal supplements. People taking MAOIs should not take EFFEXOR XR. Patients taking antidepressants should be watched closely for signs that their condition is getting worse or that they are becoming suicidal, especially when they first start therapy, or when their dose is increased or decreased. Patients should also be watched for becoming agitated, irritable, hostile, impulsive, or restless. Such symptoms should be reported to the patient’s doctor right away. EFFEXOR XR may raise blood pressure in some patients, so blood pressure should be monitored regularly. When people suddenly stop using or quickly lower their daily dose of EFFEXOR XR, discontinuation symptoms may occur. Talk to your doctor before discontinuing or reducing your dose of EFFEXOR XR. Pregnant or nursing women shouldn’t take any antidepressant without consulting their doctor. Until you see how EFFEXOR XR affects you, be careful doing such activities as driving a car or operating machinery. Avoid drinking alcohol while taking EFFEXOR XR. Common side effects with EFFEXOR XR include Anorexia, constipation, dizziness, dry mouth, insomnia, nausea, nervousness, sexual side effects, sleepiness, sweating, and weakness. EFFEXOR XR is for adults 18 and over. Ask your doctor if EFFEXOR XR is right for you.
Revision date: June 20, 2011
Last revised: by Sebastian Scheller, MD, ScD