By Irfana
B.Sc (Psychiatry Ward)
23 November 2021 -
Medically reviewed by
D. Pharm
Desvenlafaxine v/s Venlafaxine: Study, Dosage, and Side effects.
Table of Contents

Desvenlafaxine and Venlafaxine are antidepressants. Both of these medications are used widely for the treatment of depression. These medications help people to tackle their depression and overcome anxiety. But the question that arises is which of them is better Desvenlafaxine or Venlafaxine. To know more read further (Canny, L.M., 2012).

Introduction To Desvenlafaxine:

Desvenlafaxine is used for the treatment of the major depressive disorder. It belongs to the drug class called Serotonin and Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SNRI). It can be used with other drugs as a combination therapy (Tourian, K.A., 2008).

Introduction To Venlafaxine:

Venlafaxine is an antidepressant drug and is a part of the drug class named Selective Serotonin and Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SSNRI). Venlafaxine hydrochloride is the active ingredient present in Venlafaxine. Along with being used as a medication for depression, Venlafaxine is also used for the treatment of mental health problems such as anxiety and panic disorder (Benfield, P., 1995).

Working Of Desvenlafaxine:

Desvenlafaxine restricts the uptake of chemicals like Serotonin and Norepinephrine, which results in an increase in their level in the brain. These chemicals help to maintain proper mental stability. Thus, because of Desvenlafaxine, as the level of chemicals increases, it helps to improve the mood and decreases the symptoms of depression (Wesnes, K., 2016).

Working Of Venlafaxine:

Venlafaxine is a part of the SSNRI drug class in which the drugs affect the chemicals present in the brain to eradicate mental problems. Venlafaxine helps promote the rise of chemical substances such as Norepinephrine and Serotonin by blocking their reuptake, which decreases depression symptoms. It helps to improve the mood and restricts the mind from getting into negative thoughts.

Dosage Of Desvenlafaxine

Desvenlafaxine is an oral medication available as tablets for consumption. It can be taken with or without food, but a proper routine should be followed for the dosage.

An initial adult dosage should be 50 mg once a day and can be continued with the same dosage. 

The doctor can increase the dosage to 400 mg per day after observing the response to the treatment.

The tablets should not be chewed or crushed and must be swallowed as a whole to eliminate the risk of possible side effects.

Dosage Of Venlafaxine:

Venlafaxine is an oral medication, and it is available in the form of tablets, capsules, and extended-release capsules. It can be taken with food daily, however, without crushing the capsules and tablets.

For the treatment of GAD, the initial amount of dose can be 75 mg per day. 

The maximum amount of dose of Venlafaxine for GAD is 225 mg per day, and it should not exceed that to prevent further negative consequences.

For treatment of depression, an adult can start medication with an initial dose of 75 mg per day, which can be distributed in two doses of 37.5 mg each or 3 doses of 25 mg each.

The maximum dose for depression depends upon the condition and the stage at which the person faces depression. 

225 mg per day is the maximum dose limit for moderately depressed people, while the dose turns to 375 mg per day if the person is in severe depression.

Purchase Venlafaxine online from a certified online pharmacy. 

Things To Note Before Taking Desvenlafaxine:

One should not take Desvenlafaxine if:

  • Allergic to Desvenlafaxine
  • Taking herbal products and OTC vitamins
  • Used MAO in last 14 days
  • Kidney disorders
  • Liver diseases
  • Respiratory system issues
  • Seizures
  • Glaucoma
  • Below the age of 18
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women (only if allowed by the doctor)

Things To Note Before Taking Venlafaxine:

One should not take Venlafaxine if having:

  • Allergic to Venlafaxine
  • Consumed MAO in last 14 days
  • Liver and kidney diseases
  • Diabetes
  • Glaucoma
  • Thyroid
  • Seizure
  • Bleeding problems
  • Below the age of 18
  • Breastfeeding women. 
  • Venlafaxine can be taken during pregnancy only if recommended by the doctor.

Side Effects Of Desvenlafaxine:

Some serious side effects which one might experience are as follows:

  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Skin allergies or swelling
  • Blurred vision
  • Seizures
  • Breathing problems
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Hallucinations

If observed these side effects, consult the doctor immediately as they can be fatal (Chen, J.D.Z., 2013).

Following are some common side effects after taking Desvenlafaxine:

  • Nausea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of sexual interest
  • Problem in sleeping

Side Effects Of Venlafaxine:

Following are some severe side effects that can be experienced after consumption of Venlafaxine and need emergency medical help:

  • Allergic reactions such as skin rash
  • Hallucinations
  • Shivering
  • Stiffness of muscles
  • Imbalance in co-ordination
  • Fast heart rate
  • Agitation

If observed these side effects, consult the doctor immediately as they can be fatal (Chen, J.D.Z., 2013).

Some common side effects faced are:(Gupta, S., 2002)

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sleep problems
  • Dry mouth
  • Blurred vision
  • Sexual problems

Desvanlafaxine v/s Venlafaxine: Study Of Comparision

Study: The study information was obtained by MEDLINE research in order to get the results regarding the effectiveness.

Objective: To differentiate Desvenlafaxine from venlafaxine among people diagnosed with major depressive disorder and determine the results accordingly.

Method: The experimentation was conducted by gathering the subjects and providing them with the dosage of both the medication. The initial dosage for Desvenlafaxine given was 50mg, which can be further increased to the maximum dosage that is 400mg. Here, the motive was to check the response and remission rate at the 8th week.

Result: The results were as follows, for Desvenlafaxine of the dosage of 50mg was about 51- 63% and 31% - 45%, respectively. Whereas, in the case of venlafaxine, the results reflected were about 58% - 45%, respectively. The adverse side effects were concluded to be similar to that of venlafaxine, amongst which most common side effects were insomnia, drowsiness, and vomiting. It was also noted that Desvenlafaxine is comparatively less expensive than venlafaxine.

Conclusion: Thus, in conclusion, it was stated that Desvenlafaxine was considered to be inconsequential for major depressive disorder.

Desvenlafaxine v/s Venlafaxine: Which Is Effective?

It is observed that Desvenlafaxine and Venlafaxine possess similar characteristics. Even these are two different medicines, they work for an exact cause and provide effective results.

The only difference seen is in terms of side effects. People taking Venlafaxine experience Nausea at a higher intensity as compared to people taking Desvenlafaxine. No major difference can be observed in their effectiveness(Sansone, L.A., 2014).

The selection of Desvenlafaxine or Venlafaxine entirely depends upon the doctor. Both of these medications can be equally prescribed.

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