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How to avoid side effects of Venlafaxine?

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Addiction Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 2002
Answered : 1486 Questions
my doctor put me on venlafaxine XXXXXXX er 37.5 mg cap a week ago, im having trouble with sidr effects and im worried if i should just stop taking it. my heart rate feels up alot of the time andmy anxiety feels worst at times and trouble with nausea, doctor said we mae have to increase it, but i was reading alot of people had trouble and very hard time getting off of it at a higher dose, thats why before i increase it maybe i should stop taking it now then i wouldnt have a hard time getting off it. confused what to do. thank for any advice you could give me.
Posted Sat, 22 Feb 2014 in Medicines and Side Effects
Answered by Dr. Preeti Parakh 7 hours later
Brief Answer: Explained below. Detailed Answer: Hi, Welcome to Healthcare Magic! All antidepressants including venlafaxine can be associated with an increase in anxiety when they are first started or when the dose is hiked. But this usually settles down in a few days. The same is for gastrointestinal side effects like nausea. If you feel that your side effects have not started improving and are difficult to handle, then you should inform your doctor before stopping so that you can be prescribed an alternative. You are right in assuming that the dose will have to be increased as this is just the starting dose. All anti-depressants may have discontinuation symptoms when they are abruptly stopped. These last for just a few days. It is the same with venlafaxine. That is why, antidepressants should be tapered off, rather than stopping abruptly. It will not be a problem for you right now as you are on a very low dose and have not been on it for long. I personally feel that venlafaxine gives excellent results in people who can tolerate it. But there are so many other options that you need not feel disheartened. Discuss the side effects with your doctor and allow him to prescribe another anti-depressant. I hope this helps you. Please feel free to ask if you need any clarifications. Best wishes. Dr Preeti Parakh MD Psychiatry
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