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Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) - Reviews, Ratings, Comments by Patients

 
 



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Below are Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) reviews, ratings, comments submitted by patients and caregivers. Based on a total of 46 ratings/reviews, Effexor XR has an overall score of 6.46. The effectiveness score is 7.43 and the side effect score is 6.65. The scores are on ten point scale: 10 - best, 1 - worst. This information is not vetted and should not be cosidered as clinical evidence.
 

Effexor XR review by 58 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Moderately Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression
Dosage & duration:   150 mg taken 1 per day for the period of 5 years+
Other conditions:   hypothyroid
Other drugs taken:   Synthyroid
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Alleviated deep depression.
Side effects:   Sexual desire & response.
Comments:   Treatment ongoing.

 

Effexor XR review by 47 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   225mg daily taken twice daily for the period of six months
Other conditions:   anxiety
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Decreasse in general anxiety symptoms and most symptoms of depression.
Side effects:   Dry mouth, initial constipation for about one month slightly elevated heart rate
Comments:   150 mg capsule taken with breakfast and 75mg with evening meal. This was accompanied by psychological counselling, mainly cognitive behaviour therapy

 

Effexor XR review by 35 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression/Anxiety
Dosage & duration:   37.5, 75, 150 (dosage frequency: once per day) for the period of 4 years
Other conditions:   Eating Disorder-Bulimia and Anorexia; post-partum depression
Other drugs taken:   None
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Immediately felt like "the cloud had lifted." Anxiety essentially disappeared and life really did get easier. Removed the sense of "running in concrete."
Side effects:   At first, sleeping was intermittent and was full of bizarre dreams. This quickly passed.
Comments:   Effexor was prescribed after Serzone has run it's course. Treated for depression (dysthymia) and anxiety related to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Excellent results compared to Serzone and Paxil.

 

Effexor XR review by 37 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   No Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression
Dosage & duration:   225 mg taken daily for the period of 2+ years
Other conditions:   Fibromyalgia
Other drugs taken:   Trazodone, Tramadol
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Depression was gone for the first time in my life! I finally knew what it was like to be "normal".
Side effects:   I did not experience side effects
Comments:   I had taken other anti-depressants with no benefit and negative side effects. I also had done various talk therapies. When the dose of Effexor XR got high enough, I felt for the first time what it was like to be "normal" - happy, sad, etc. without the overbearing feeling of depression. When I had to go off the Effexor XR due to cost, the depression recurred. This drug literally changed my life. However, when I talk to other people who were not helped by it, they frequently are on a very low dose. I am glad that I found a doctor willing to prescribe a high enough dose to be beneficial.

 

Effexor XR review by 52 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   mild to moderate depression
Dosage & duration:   150 mg taken once a day for the period of 1 year
Other conditions:   hypothyroid, hypertension
Other drugs taken:   norvasc, tenex, armour thyroid, astelin
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Improved mood after trying several other SSRI's. Had tried Prozac and Wellbutrin and got no effect from them. I was able to function better. I was not ecstatic, but was functional and less prone to negative thinking.
Side effects:   a bit of feeling dull or neutral.
Comments:   Maximum dosage indicated in literature is 150 mg per day. Took two 75 mg capsules in the morning with breakfast. The medication started to work within two or three days. However, it's expensive. I would not say that I am non-functional without it, but I believe I am more functional when taking it.

 

Effexor XR review by care giver of 34 year old male patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   High level anxiety/depression
Dosage & duration:   one capsule (37.5mg venlafaxine)/day taken once per day for the period of 3 months
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Unlike other anti-depressents which appeared to completely depress all emotional feeling and expression and lower energy levels, this drug appeared to free the patient from the high level of anxiety while allowing 'normal' emotional functioning. It appeared to stabalise the situation without comprimising the patients ability to perform normal work functions.
Side effects:   There was some drowsiness after taking the capsule, and therefore it was taken at night.
Comments:   One capsule per day, taken in the evening.

 

Effexor XR review by 43 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression
Dosage & duration:   75mg taken daily for the period of 1 year
Other conditions:   Migraines
Other drugs taken:   Maxalt
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Effexor was very effective at alleviating my symptoms of depression. My mood improved dramatically, I felt happy and engaged in life again. It also worked fairly quickly. I began feeling the effects within the first week.
Side effects:   The side effects I experienced while taking Effexor were insomnia, rapid heartbeat and grinding my teeth at night. Also, I found myself incessantly jiggling my leg while sitting at my desk, watching tv, etc.. All in all, these were minor and as easy trade-off. The major side effect I noticed was a complete loss of libido and inability to reach orgasm. Simply put, it was as if a switch had been turned off on my sex drive. This side effect was the reason I chose to stop taking Effexor.
Comments:   My physician started me out on 37.5mg/day for 1 week then increased the dosage to 75mg/day for another week and, finally, to 150mg/day. After taking 150mg/day for about a week, I felt it was too much...my heart was always racing, I couldn't sleep, and I generally just felt "nervous". My physician dropped my dosage back to 75mg/day and that seemed to work best for me. I absolutely feel that the Effexor helped lift my depression. However, I eventually chose to stop taking it because of the sexual side effects. After being on Effexor for about a year, I both wanted and needed to have a healthy sexual relationship with my husband again. I dropped the dosage back to 37.5mg/day for a week, then one every other day for about another week before stopping altogether. I don't recall having any "withdrawal" symptoms. Within a few days of the last dose, all sexual functions were back.

 

Effexor XR review by 50 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Moderately Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   150 m (dosage frequency: once daily) for the period of 10 yrs
Other conditions:   headaches
Other drugs taken:   ibuprofin
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Wasn't as severly depressed as before taking the drug, didn't sleep as much and was able to function normally in a job.
Side effects:   nightmares, some drowsiness during the day, minor weight gain
Comments:   Took the medication in the mornings tried to discontinue the medication gradually, but had severe side effects including electric like shocks

 

Effexor XR review by 40 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Anxiety
Dosage & duration:   300 mg / day taken daily for the period of to present
Other conditions:   None
Other drugs taken:   None
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Reduced anxiety, less irritability, levelized moods.
Side effects:   Odd sensation in the head, somnolence, teeth grinding.
Comments:   Started at 75 mg/day and increased over 3-4 months to 300 mg/day. Continued improvement and reduction of symptoms as dosage increased. Renewed period of side effects with each increase, lasting not more that 2-3 days. Also, odd, vivid dreams occur ocassionaly, but not enough to be a problem.

 

Effexor XR review by 48 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Ineffective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   menopausal systems
Dosage & duration:   37.5 mg taken 1 daily for the period of 1 month
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Although this treatment was intended to alleviate symptoms associated with menopause, either the dosage was insignificant or the product was not appropriate for this particular patient. No relief was experienced in any way. If anything, symptoms continue to worsen.
Side effects:   No side effects were experienced in any way with the original dosage of 37.5 mg. Dosage was increased to a level double the original prescription and at this level the anticipated side effects became apparent. Both drowsiness and dizziness were experienced at the increased dosage. There was still no significant improvement in the original symptoms.
Comments:   This was a very short lived "trial" to assess the efficacy of this particular drug for the presenting complaint associated with onset of menopause. One capsule was taken each night in an attempt to alleviate the disruption to sleeping patterns caused by recurring night sweats. After a two week period and no relief, the dosage was doubled. The ensuing side effects of drowsiness, fatigue and occasional dizziness were attributed to the medication. Still no relief of the original presenting symptoms. The value of continuing with this medication was nil, so was discontinued.

 

Effexor XR review by 30 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   150 mg taken daily for the period of 1.5 years
Other conditions:   anxiety
Other drugs taken:   xanax
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   The xanax helped slow things down and make everything less stressful. helped me to stay on a calm even level.
Side effects:   unfortuntely it is extremely addictive and you can find yourself craving it, and everything can become a problem if I didnt have any. Dealing with lifes regular ups and downs all became stressful if I didnt have it. Had to stop taking it as soon as I noticed my behavior.
Comments:   I want to say it was 50 mg. doses taken up to 3 times a day. It was somewhat up to me when I needed to take it. Mostly for anxiety attacks.

 

Effexor XR review by 38 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Marginally Effective
Side effects:   Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   75mg taken every day for the period of 1 month
Other conditions:   N/A
Other drugs taken:   N/A
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   some decreased depression but not as well as with wellbutrin
Side effects:   constipation, dizziness and elevated bp
Comments:   had to stop the mediccine and go back to taking wellbutrin 300mg xl. the side effect of going off of the effexor included a lot of dizziness

 

Effexor XR review by 28 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression/anxiety
Dosage & duration:   150mg taken once daily for the period of 2+years
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   birth control (yasmin)
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Helped with being able to feel more comfortable interacting in social settings. Helped with being able to complete daily chores and activities. Also besides getting my daily chores accomplished I have more desire to attend social events and have picked up a few hobbies. Increased my overall since of happiness and positive outlook on life.
Side effects:   At first I had trouble sleeping until my body adjusted to the medication. I have more vivid dreams. Also has caused me to talk in my sleep and sometimes physically act out the dream while asleep. One night I was dreaming I was swimming and woke me and my boyfriend up because I was kicking my legs as if I were swimming. If I miss a dose and go to sleep it causes night sweats. If I miss a dose before bed I wake up with my clothes and hair soaked in sweat.
Comments:   I was started at 37.5mg for a week. Moved up to 75mg the next week. After a week at 75mg was then moved up to 150mg. I was then moved up a week later to 250mg. I took 250mg for about 2yrs. I had to cut back on the dose because I lost my job with insurance and could no longer afford 250mg prescriptions. I tried to (without my doctors advice or knowledge) get off the medicine cold turkey when I lost my insurance. Doing that made me extremely emotional. I would start crying for no reason at all and felt crazy! I went back to the doctor and talked about my situation. She set up a program to slowly take me off the medicine. I stepped down my dose by 75mg every 2 weeks till I got to 75mg. Then I went to taking 37.5 for 2 weeks. Then went to 37.5 every other day for a week. Then 37.5 every third day and so on till I finally got down to none. I went 6 months off the medication before going back to the doctor to be put back on it. I have now been back on it for about a year now. I have no plans to ever stop taking it again.

 

Effexor XR review by 23 year old male patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Marginally Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression
Dosage & duration:   150 MG taken once a day for the period of 1.5 years
Other conditions:   N/A
Other drugs taken:   lithium
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   I do not feel there were any benefits from this treatment - only side effects. Weaning off the the drug was extremely difficult.
Side effects:   Impotence, tremor
Comments:   I was given Effexor to take once a day for depression. I did not derive much benefit. I received a lot of benefit from seeing a therapist and taking nutritional supplements.

 

Effexor XR review by 47 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Ineffective
Side effects:   Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   75 mg taken once day for the period of three months
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   I took it for three months and I did not feel any less depressed. I actually felt kind of paranois and "out of it." I did not fee any less depressed, in fact more anxious.
Side effects:   Tired, spaced out, insomnia WEIGHT GAIN
Comments:   It did not work I gained 23 pounds in three months! I tried taking in am and pm and neither worked out. I gained a lot of weight and experienced insomnia and early am waking.

 

Effexor XR review by 57 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   300 mg taken once in the morning for the period of years
Other conditions:   anxiety
Other drugs taken:   Lamictal, desyrel
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   I have been on Effexor XR for about 10 years. I am currently taking 300 mg per day. Before going on Effexor XR I was a crazy person...I tried to commit suicide several times. I still had anger issues and was given Lamictal and my anger has decreased immensely. I had been on so many different antidepressants I thought this was how my life was always going to be, my family slowly watching me sleep myself to death. Since my doctor put me on Effexor XR added Lamictal & Desyrel I feel better than ever. I also found out I'm allergic to wheat, dairy & eggs. Deleting these items from my diet along with the medications has made me a new person.
Side effects:   The only adverse effect I experienced was when I tried to play doctor and wean myself from the meds. It was like withdrawals from hard drugs; chills, nausea, etc. I took periodically myself off my meds because I didn't want to be dependant on medicaton. It was always the wrong thing to do.
Comments:   My Dr gave me a sample pack (containing 7-37.5 mg capsules & 7-75mg capsules) as well as a prescription for 75 mg. I was to take the 37.5 mg capsules then the 75 mg capsules. The dosage has been increased over time to 300mg.

 

Effexor XR review by 40 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   anxiety and depression
Dosage & duration:   225 mg daily taken daily for the period of 5 years and still taking
Other conditions:   hay fever, low thyroid, reflux
Other drugs taken:   Synthroid, Nasonex, Prilosec occ.
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Brought me out of a severe, didn't-care-if-I-lived depression without making anxiety too much worse. Not perfect but works well enough that I don't want to quit taking.
Side effects:   Starting it and titrating up caused interesting side effects: low blood sugar, big pupils, palpitations (all were temporary). Now if I miss a dose, I get bad night sweats and wierd dreams, and quickly remember to take it again.
Comments:   Started at 37.5 mg for few days, then 75 then 112.5 then 150mg. Did well initially, then was increased to 225 mg several months later. Tried 300 mg for a while but not much difference from 225. Will have to taper down if I ever stop the med.

 

Effexor XR review by 41 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   No Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression & anxiety
Dosage & duration:   150 mg taken 1x/day for the period of since last April
Other conditions:   panic attacks
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   I was having panic attacks and very high anxiety. Effexor XR helped to reduce the anxiety and eliminate the panic attacks. My depression is much, much better.
Side effects:   I have to take it with food or I get sick stomach. Otherwise I have no side effects.
Comments:   You must take a SSRI daily. If you skip a few days you start to feel like you are getting a really bad cold, and disoriented. They are hard to wean off of. Do not stop taking! Talk to your doctor if you feel you want to reduce your dosage.

 

Effexor XR review by 23 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   No Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Major depression
Dosage & duration:   150mg taken once daily for the period of six months
Other conditions:   Anxiety
Other drugs taken:   Lamictal, Buspar
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Alleviated my despair, gave me back some control of my emotions and motivated me to work harder at managing my depression and get out of the house.
Side effects:   May have contributed to my insomnia.
Comments:   Before I started taking Effexor I had tried Lexapro and Cymbalta with unsatisfactory results. Having weaned off those, it was hard just to get out of bed - I was missing work and couldn't hold it together at all. Within a couple of days of taking this I started to feel better. It's been the best so far at managing my depression but I still needed other drugs to help with mood swings and anxiety. Overall a good payoff, just wish it was generic!

 

Effexor XR review by 40 year old male patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Anxiety, mild depression
Dosage & duration:   75 mg,37 mg taken daily for the period of 1 year
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Venlafaxine is a bicyclic antidepressant, and is usually categorized as a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI), but it has been referred to as a serotonin-norepinephrine-dopamine reuptake inhibitor. It works by blocking the transporter "reuptake" proteins for key neurotransmitters affecting mood, thereby leaving more active neurotransmitters in the synapse. The neurotransmitters affected are serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine) and norepinephrine (noradrenaline). Additionally, in high doses it weakly inhibits the reuptake of dopamine, with recent evidence showing that the norepinephrine transporter also transports some dopamine as well, implying that SNRIs may also increase dopamine transmission. This is because SNRIs work by inhibiting reuptake, i.e. preventing the serotonin and norepinephrine transporters from taking their respective neurotransmitters back to their storage vesicles for later use. If the norepinephrine transporter normally recycles some dopamine too, then SNRIs will also enhance dopaminergic transmission. Therefore, the antidepressant effects associated with increasing norepinephrine levels may also be partly or largely due to the concurrent increase in dopamine (particularly in the prefrontal cortex).
Side effects:   Difficulty in reaching orgasm. Increased amount of ejaculate. Rare mild headache.
Comments:   My uptake levels were not severely out of balance. I started with 150 mg and felt the positive effects in 20 minutes. I was told it would take a week. I reduced the dosage to 75 mg then 37.5 mg after six months because I felt those doses to be too strong. I know others that found this drug helpful. Others it had no effect on at all, even at doses of 300 mg.

 

Effexor XR review by 19 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Marginally Effective
Side effects:   Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   225mg taken 1 daily for the period of 7 months
Other conditions:   neurocardiogenic syncope
Other drugs taken:   atenolol 25 mg daily
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Instead of curing my depression, this drug made me feel completely flat.
Side effects:   Besides the extreme flatness, there were not many at time of treatment; however, I had severe cramps and diarrhea getting off of it
Comments:   I had been on Zoloft for 5 years with no problems. After a while it had been less effective, and my doctor cycled me rapidly through other drugs that did not work well. I had been inpatient for a week because treatment had been going so poorly. So this drug seemed better, compared to that, for a while, but gradually I noticed that I didn't so much feel better as that I just didn't feel anything at all.

 

Effexor XR review by 48 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   No Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Anxiety
Dosage & duration:   75mg taken once a day for the period of 2 years
Other conditions:   None
Other drugs taken:   None
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Completely changed my everyday life in a beneficial way. I was more confident with myself than ever before. Before taking the drug, I was cold and hateful for no reason. I could bite someone's head off very quickly. After taking the drug, I am now such a nice person and genuinely care about other people and realize that everyone is different...........and that's ok.
Side effects:   None
Comments:   Once a day dosage in the morning with breakfast. I cannot believe I ever lived a happy life before this drug.

 

Effexor XR review by 24 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression
Dosage & duration:   37.5 mg, 75 mg, 150 mg taken every day for the period of 3 years
Other conditions:   Social anxiety disorder
Other drugs taken:   None
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Felt the "cloud lift" after 6 days or so. Feel free from depression for the first time in 10 years. But, glad to be rid of it.
Side effects:   Horrible for me. Acquired secondary insomnia (for the entire duration), at one point, didn't sleep for 5 days. Had a very intense feeling of delayed reactions/delayed feelings. ie. would go to turn the music up in the car and would turn the dial the wrong way. Took a few seconds to feel what I was actually touching, grabbing. Killed my sex drive. Withdrawl is EXTREME. Constant crying, very vivid and disturbing dreams, general listlessness.
Comments:   Taken once a day (until up to 150 mg/day and then taken twice a day). Always in the morning, as would help with insomnia.

 

Effexor XR review by 29 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Extremely Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   GAD
Dosage & duration:   150g (dosage frequency: once daily morning) for the period of Ongoing
Other conditions:   slight depression/social/performance anxiety
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Generally more ability to take charge of my life, organise myself and feel good about myself. Not avoiding situations like I used to and generally able to hold myself together and not fear having onset dizziness/lethargy/tiredness/weakness/withdrawal/stress/hyperventilation that comes with extreme GAD. Waking up and not deliberating my every move, ability to sleep at nite and not get myself into a state of panic, less paranoia more inner confidence and self assurance.
Side effects:   Initially it was torture, and this usually puts people off but for those who feel they can not get through it, take a few days 1/2 weeks of work or school or whatever the case may be and suffer it out cause it's a gateway to a new life!! It was torture, I felt like I was loosing it initially, althou there was a great enjoyment aspect as well that sort of reminded me of an experience I had on amphetemines many moons ago!! I was walking around for two days on the verge of an orgasm!! Sadly that was the only plus beyond that there was nausea, acid/burn in my stomach inability to eat lost 4 lbs that was followed with overeating and constipation, nitemares nitesweats, fuzzy feeling in general more anxiety inability to step outside my zone! It passes after bout two weeks roughly and then u start to feel the benefits!! Well nd truly feeling the benefits after two months.
Comments:   Started on 75 and increased to 150 after a month and felt on top of the world after two months!! I would highly recommend to any one with sever gad! I have tried many other ssris four in total and had no luck, in fact had luck initially with Paroxetine but lapsed after about three months! So this has given me my life back well and truly!!

 

Effexor XR review by 39 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Moderately Effective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   chronic depression
Dosage & duration:   75 - 150 mg taken once a day for the period of 13 years
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   My anger and depression seemed to get much better within 3 weeks of starting on 75 mg. My dose was eventually increased over time to 150mg. My family noticed a difference in my attitude.
Side effects:   At first I was very tired so instead of taking the dosage in the morning, I switched to bedtime.
Comments:   My depression is better over the years but I have less desire for sex. I have found it tremendously difficult to maintain or loose weight. The weight problem seems to have increased over the years to a point where I would like to try and stop or at least decrease the medication. The problem is that when I wanted to have a 3rd child, I decided to discontinue the medication and the effects of stopping Effexor were horrible. I have seen problems when I miss a dosage so I am scared to try and stop the medicine. Before I when I "weaned" off the medication I had severe headaches, nausea, and dizziness. I am worried about trying to quit again but I am having such problems with trying to loose weight that I want to try.

 

Effexor XR review by 30 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   dysthymia
Dosage & duration:   37.5 mg taken once a day for the period of a few years
Other conditions:   low blood pressure
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   decrease in moodiness, irritability, cessation of depression/dysthymia related symptoms.
Side effects:   first 2 weeks: chronic yawm, grogginess(subsided abfter 2 weeks) insomnia
Comments:   Prescribed this drug for treatment of a physiological/neurological condition causing a decrease in various neurochemicals, which resulted in chronic dysthymia (low grade depressive disorder). Treatment was not accompanied by any level of counseling or behavioral modification, and was highly successful.

 

Effexor XR review by 25 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Moderately Effective
Side effects:   Extremely Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression, Anixety?
Dosage & duration:   started at 35mg and increased to 75mg taken once a day i beleive this was years ago for the period of 9 months
Other conditions:   anxiety
Other drugs taken:   none birth control
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   I felt alive again, starting to go out more, spent time doing things I enjoyed had energy to go to the gym for the first time in my life
Side effects:   I started to date a married man, that lead to me becoming obsessed. he was my boss. I clinged to him because I felt alone. I then quit my job and tried to overdose on these meds.. drank a bottle of alcohol and then took several pills and sleeping pills. ended up in emergeny and then just went right off them without supervision. to this day I take nothing and Im still very depressed. Im seeing a doctor again and trying to figure out what to do. I tried to go back on them and felt instantly high for two days taking the lowest dose there was. almost like my brain said NO WAY are u takin this again.. I don't recommend taking this unless u have a good doctor . the doc that gave me this medication was a walk in clinic who knew nothing about me.
Comments:   .. well I was taking this after breaking out of a relationship that I was in for 3 years. I was depressed living in a room that i rented off a friend. I was living before with the boyfriend in a home he owned but we bought together. I was working full-time and continued to do so after i moved but felt very alone and started to have panic attacks sorta in a mall.. trying to shop was impossible and I never left the house, only to work.. when i did go to the mall

 

Effexor XR review by 49 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Anxiety
Dosage & duration:   150mg taken 1/day for the period of 3 months
Other conditions:   depression
Other drugs taken:   nil
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Stabilized my anxiety during a difficult relationship and grief over loss of opportunity to be a mother. Allowed me to keep working and stay in relationship without major breakdown. Prevented me from developing panic attacks and developing major depression
Side effects:   Difficulty with orgasm...took ages.Dry mouth. A vague sense of being out of touch with the world.Difficulty sleeping for first week
Comments:   2x75mg in the morning with food, started in mid dose as anxiety severe. No real relief for first three weeks then much better. Stopped after 3 months as didn't want to become dependent

 

Effexor XR review by 20 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   300mg taken once daily for the period of one year (presently taking it)
Other conditions:   GAD, panick attacks, and OCD
Other drugs taken:   Klonapin, BC
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Worked very fast, could feel results within a week. Very effective in lifting severe depression and reduced frequency of panick attacks (though did not eliminate them entirely)
Side effects:   Some insomnia, very vivid dreams, sweating at night. DO NOT MISS DOSES OR STOP TAKING...discontinuation happens really quickly and is the harshest I've ever felt (I've come off of Lexapro, amitriptyline and nortriptyline) Also my heartrate has increased slightly.
Comments:   Went up to 300mg a day from the starters pack within a few months of starting it. Lifted a very deep depression; at the time it was a godsend. After a year of being on it at 300mg it is starting to lose effectiveness (which I am told is typical) so I will either have to switch or add something because I can't increase much more.

 

Effexor XR review by 21 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression, social anxiety disorder
Dosage & duration:   37.5mg, 75mg, 105mg, 75mg taken once a day morning or night. for the period of 2.5 years and currently
Other conditions:   panic attacks
Other drugs taken:   lorazapam, reclipsen(birth control)
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   After a few months of treatment, I was actually able to function and get my social anxiety under control. My emotions became intact, and I enjoyed doing things again.
Side effects:   Missing a dose of this medication is HORRIBLE. I start feeling withdrawal symptoms after 24 hours of not taking my medication. I once went 3 days without the 75mg pills, and I thought I was going to die. I was in a constant spin, I cried the whole time, I was exhausted, but I couldn't lay still. I was so nauseous that I couldn't eat and dry heaved for days. I literally thought I was going to die. DO NOT MISS A DOSE OF THIS MEDICATION!! In the beginning of treatment, I started out with 37.5mg pills and I did feel nauseous and dizzy for the first few days until my body adjusted, but it was nothing compared to how I would be feeling in 2 weeks! I do think this medication completely killed my sex drive. I don't have the urge to be intimate at all.
Comments:   I must say, I got extremely lucky with this medication. It was the first one I tried, and the only one I had to try. I was 19 when I starting taking this medication and was just starting my first year of college. I lived in an apartment with my boyfriend and attended school, no job. But that's all I did. Never made it out of the apartment, never went out, I lived in a huge city, made no friends, just an absolute mess. My emotions were a wreck and I felt absolutely helpless. I cried alll the time and I started having panic attacks out of nowhere, which I had absolutely NO idea what was going on. I just dealt with them in horror. I drank and did drugs, but it only made things worse. My doctor prescribed this drug and it did absolute wonders, within a week, I was starting to feel the weight being lifted off my shoulders. Within 3 weeks, I was able to drive in traffic, and open my blinds to let the sun in. Within 2 months, I was back to normal! I have the occasional off days, but who doesn't? The thought of possibly being dependent on this medication scares me because of how hard it's said to be weaned off of it, but I'm too scared to even TRY coming off effexor because of the withdrawal symptoms I experienced before. Overall, this medication is amazing, and does wonders.

 

Effexor XR review by 23 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Marginally Effective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Anxiety
Dosage & duration:   300mg taken once at night for the period of 2 months
Other conditions:   None
Other drugs taken:   Birth Control, Xanax
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   eased my anxiety, helped me start going to work more.
Side effects:   This drug was extremely difficult to start. I had headaches and dizziness for weeks. Also caused digestive problems - bloating and flatulence. Had no energy - before I took this drug I was a very active person but once on it I had no energy to excercise. Also craved sugary and carbohydrate rich food which ended up giving me thrush and other fungal infections. Caused concentration problems. I stuggled to concentrate on my work for a full day. I also felt very flat.
Comments:   Am stopping this drug and going on to paroxetine again as the side effects outweighed the benefits.

 

Effexor XR review by 25 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   75mg taken once daily for the period of 3 months
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Helped ease depressed mood, less mood swings. Better overall sense of well being. I was not as emotional and life felt more managable. I didnt even notice its effects while on it. I have tried other antidepressants that made me feel disconnected and my mind was cloudy, also experienced weight gain. Effexor did not make me feel like I was on anything, it just worked in the background. I only noticed it effects once I quit, my emotions were stronger and all my senses seemed intensified.
Side effects:   Bad withdrawels upon quiting medication. Sexual side effects, My senses seemed dulled.
Comments:   Took 75 mgs once daily for about three months, then wheened myself of it. Very difficult to do, had withdrawels that included nausua, crying, dizzyness, brain felt like it was short circuiting in a way. I had to lay in bed when I didnt take it for 2 days.

 

Effexor XR review by 26 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   severe depression
Dosage & duration:   150 mg taken 1x daily for the period of 6 years
Other conditions:   gerd
Other drugs taken:   prevacid
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   i was severly depressed for weeks and would just cry all the time. i had tried several other anidepressants and none of them worked. one day my doctor said lets try a new drug called effexor xr. i was started on 75 mg for about 2 months and was still depressed so then i was increased to 150 mg and have been on it since. i an so much happier and my family is also. this medicine has been my life saver and recommend anyone depressed to take this one
Side effects:   i very vivid dreams but i can live with this side effect to be happy
Comments:   i found that the treatment plan has made life worth living

 

Effexor XR review by 28 year old male patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Ineffective
Side effects:   Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   150mg taken one cap a day for the period of 2 weeks
Other conditions:   anxiety
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   none
Side effects:   dilated pupils irritated skin insomnia emotional
Comments:   Told my doc about the side effects and he told me they supposed to do everything the opposite that I'm complaining about. i threw away the pills and switched doctors. now i smoke pot. it makes me happy and there's no side effects that i was getting from Effexor besides the munchies ;)

 

Effexor XR review by 31 year old male patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   No Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   anxiety
Dosage & duration:   75mg, 37.5 mg taken once daily for the period of 5 years
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   none
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   reduction in anxiety, no panic attacks. drug is extremely effective
Side effects:   no side effects while on drug. Super bad side effects while going off the drug. Google searched it. Lots of people with the same symptoms. read up before you start it.
Comments:   took medication for 5 to 6 years. Very hard to get off this drug. I liked the way my anxiety was controlled, but it also inhibits all emotional response (at least in my case). I didn't have any mood, emotion, nothing. It gave me a very flat affect. Also my doctor did not seem very informed toward drug side effects and withdrawl symptomologies.

 

Effexor XR review by 32 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression
Dosage & duration:   75mg > 225mg taken once per day for the period of 2 Years
Other conditions:   None
Other drugs taken:   None
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Made a huge difference in my depression (post natal) at first. Had tried Zoloft after my previous pregnancy, which seemed to stop working. Cycled through a number of other drugs (8 within 9 months) and ended up sticking with EffexorXR as it seemed the one with the least side-effects initially.
Side effects:   Weight gain, difficulty losing weight, blurry vision, general 'blah' moods. Attempted to taper off & managed to only go from 225 to 150mg for a week before MAJOR side effects kicked in: headaches, brain 'zaps', aggression, agitation, extreme mood swings and hives. Returned to 225mg (for a month now) and still experiencing severe hives & developing allergies to a number of things I wasn't allergic to before.
Comments:   Post-natal depression & major depression/anxiety.

 

Effexor XR review by 40 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Anxiety
Dosage & duration:   150 mg taken 1 daily for the period of 8 years
Other conditions:   thyroid condition
Other drugs taken:   synthroid
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   After taking effexor XR, a consideralbe change in attitude and general outlook was improved. Increased desire to do daily activities improved as well as anxiety about social situations descreased somewhat.
Side effects:   There were really no side effects other than when one dose was missed, I became very dizzy.
Comments:   I was placed on Paxil at first which did work, however I had lots of acne as a result. After being placed on Effexor, I noticed an immediate change, however because I have been on this dose for a long time, I feel that the effects are wearing off. I have not yet discussed this with my doctor.

 

Effexor XR review by 45 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression/Anxiety
Dosage & duration:   37.5mg taken daily for the period of 8 weeks so far
Other conditions:   Migraines
Other drugs taken:   Inderol
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Alleviated all my symptoms with in the first week
Side effects:   Insomnia Lack of libido and orgasm Dry Mouth Contipation Minor agitation
Comments:   I felt a difference within the first week. I am just so hopeful the side effects start to go away as this drug has saved my marriage and improved my families lives immensely. My main concern so far is the insomnia which was a problem straight away. I have just changed to taking my medication in the mornings, I will see how I go.

 

Effexor XR review by 48 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Ineffective
Side effects:   Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   clinical depression
Dosage & duration:   250mg taken every day for the period of 1 year
Other conditions:   osteoarithitis
Other drugs taken:   just vitamins in the form of omega3,6&9
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   I could not see any benefits. I certainly did not feel any more emotionally balanced or stable than before.
Side effects:   This medication plunged me into experiencing menopausal symptoms. i took a blood test and my GP told me that I was not menopausal and gave me under arm deodorant which stung for the excessive sweating. My skin became extremely dry. I have no more natural vaginal secretions. My hair became very dry and I am experiencing small bald patch sin the front hair line.my sleeping pattern is absolutely awful. I look tired and haggard all the time, with enormous eye bags.The pain in my knees became a lot more severe
Comments:   I was prescribed this medication when the medication I had been taking for 2 and a half years became ineffective. I was not informed of any side effects. Every time I went to my GP to discuss symptoms which I was worried about, they just patronised me. I no longer take any medication for my condition and although I do not consider myself to be well, some of my symptoms have reduced. The others such as incontinence, dry skin, lack of natural seretions, I am just trying to live with or trying to find products which I hope will one day help me.

 

Effexor XR review by 53 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression
Dosage & duration:   75 mg taken 1 x daily for the period of 5 years
Other conditions:   hypertension
Other drugs taken:   Lotrel, metoprolol
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   My symptoms of depression were eased considerably. I felt more like myself and began to take pleasure in activities. I stopped feeling sad and crying. I was able to concentrate again. My appetite returned and my sleep patterns normalized.
Side effects:   The drug made me nauseated the first month I took it. The only other significant ongoing side effect I experienced was constipation.
Comments:   I began taking Effexor XR when I was severely depressed. I took it once a day for approximately five years. My symptoms included crying, lack of interest in life, inability to concentrate, loss of appetite, and sleeping more than usuual. I could barely get out of bed and I could not function. Within two weeks of beginning treatment with Effoxor, I began to feel take more of an interest in normal activities and was able to eat and sleep normally.

 

Effexor XR review by 54 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Moderately Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression
Dosage & duration:   150 mg taken once per day for the period of 8years
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   omeprazole
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   I made a good recovery from a moderate depressive illness and I believe that maintenance therapy has prevented me from relapsing especially when i have been under additional stress .I only have to take it once per day. I have only had one increase in dosage from 75mg to 150 mg
Side effects:   Myoclonic jerks,paricularly when i am relaxed. I get these more often at night whilst in bed . Dry mouth .Sweating ,especially at night . Initially an occasional tachycardia . The worst side effect is withdrawal symptoms ,even if I miss one dose. These are 'headiness' like flu,nausea ,a really odd feeling . It goes after taking my normal dose within about 3 to 4 hours
Comments:   I was clinically depressed about 8 years ago ,under alot of work based stress and looking after a young famiy,Eventually saw my GP who prescribed Venlafaxine &%mg which worked well. Some time later my mood dipped..I cant recall the details and the dose was increased . I have been unable to come off it . I tried Fluoxetine at one point but this was not nearly as eefective . I am waiting till I retire to withdraw because I cant afford to take time off work ..not financially,just becaue of my commitments

 

Effexor XR review by 63 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Ineffective
Side effects:   Extremely Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression
Dosage & duration:   150 MG taken 1 per day for the period of 3 MO
Other conditions:   n/a
Other drugs taken:   Singulair
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   NONE!!!
Side effects:   EXTREME fatique. I was not able to function day to day activities. I spent 14-18 hours a day in bed. My muscles, joints & bones ached. The depression was not relieved, which probably a result of the side effects. I came off the drug slowly ( with help of physician) and now I feel great. The depression is still a possibility but I will NEVER take an anti-depression drug again. I choose to have therapy and ask for the support of my family & friends
Comments:   Slowly declined dosage and am NOW EFFEXOR XR FREE!!!!!!!

 

Effexor XR review by 29 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Ineffective
Side effects:   Severe Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression
Dosage & duration:   375mg/day taken 3xa day for the period of 6 months
Other conditions:   PTSD, Neuropathic pain, Arthritis,Migraine
Other drugs taken:   Co codamol
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   None.
Side effects:   I was desperate to feel better, but after the first pill was swallowed, I felt physically and mentally awful. I had palpitations, nausea, uncontrolable shaking, severe headache and felt strangely detatched from the world (it was as if I was watching the world through a dense fog).
Comments:   This was my Psychiatrist and GP`s last hope of treating my depression with medication, and I was told that I probably would suffer no adverse effects ("very rare", apparently). However, after telling them at my appointment a month after starting Effexor XR, I was told that dissociative symptoms of PTSD are rarely made worse by effexor.

 

Effexor XR review by 25 year old male patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Highly Effective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   depression, axiety
Dosage & duration:   75mg taken daily for the period of 7-8 months before tapering off
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   Lyrica (prescribed off-lable for anxiety)
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   Having taken a four other drugs for depression over the last 15 years (all of the SSRI category) or so, and I can say without doubt that this drug was amazing as removing my depression, as well as substantially reducing remaining anxiety left over.
Side effects:   It almost immediately raised my diastolic and systolic blood pressure my 20 and 35 points respectively (up to about 105/170), as well as elevating my heart rate from 75 beats per minute to 95-100 beats. I occasionally experienced difficulty reaching orgasm in the course of sexual activity, but did not experience reduced sex drive or difficulty attaining a full erection (I'm honestly not sure whether to rate this as a side effect or a benefit).
Comments:   The benefits of Effexor XR were terrific. The side effects while taking it were just fine with me, though my psychiatrist seemed alarmed about my heart rate and blood pressure. That said, the withdrawal was so atrociously horrible it simply wasn't worth taking. I would have rather taken a drug that was half as effective without this uniquely gross withdrawal. Let me put this into perspective: I've gone through nicotine, alcohol, and speed withdrawal (the last a long time ago) and the Effexor was the worst (and I required hospitalization for the alcohol). It took me between three and four months to taper off the drug. I tried to stop --unsuccessfully--at 75% the regular dose, then 50%, and then 25% before deciding to just taper it down to a dose so small I had a hard time believing it had any psychoactive effects at all. Even finally quitting taking the drug at all when I'd tapered down to 1/15th the initial dose, I experienced mild versions of the same awful withdrawal issues that had popped up before: intermittent (intense!) nausea (previously full blown vomiting on previous quitting attempts), night sweats, what I've read in Effexor forums described-inadequately-as "brain shivers," though-- amusingly enough-- very little of the depression or anxiety rebound past the first few days of 0 mg. If I were at suicidal or bed-ridden level of depression this drug would be completely worth it, even with the withdrawal. Otherwise, I'm staying away from SSNRI's for a long time.

 

Effexor XR review by 36 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Mild Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Anxiety/ OCPD /Depression
Dosage & duration:   75 mg taken once daily for the period of currently using
Other conditions:   high blood pressure
Other drugs taken:   Diovan, Nor-QD, Ativan
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   After trying Celexa for several months this drug finally made a difference with my anxiety and obsessive compulsive personality disorder. I noticed considerable change after using for 3-4 weeks. I am much more tolerant of things being "out of control" and have stopped some of my "patterns".
Side effects:   I have occasional night sweats, very vivid dreams and almost no sexual desire.
Comments:   I had taken this drug several years ago for depression. I weaned myself off gradually after using for about 1 and 1/2 years. I have been in counceling for the past 5 months and was diagnosed with OCPD. The constant perfectionism created so much anxiety for me. I felt "stuck". After trying Celexa for several months I thought I would give the Effexor another try. I am very glad I did. The only down side is the cost. The drug is very expensive.

 

Effexor XR review by 15 year old female patient

  Rating
Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
  
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Depression
Dosage & duration:   75 mg taken once daily for the period of 2 years
Other conditions:   Anxiety, Insomnia
Other drugs taken:   N/A
  
Reported Results
Benefits:   I was a lot younger than what is normally recommended when I started taking Effexor at 15, but along with this help of a great therapist it definately seemed to lift that "cloud" of depression and my anxiety attacks and insomnia disappeared.
Side effects:   dilated pupils, increase in heart rate. When I was being "weaned" off it, I had a lot of dizzy spells
Comments:   I was put on a 37.5 mg dose once daily for about a month before it was increased to 75 mg. While I was using this prescription, I had regular meetings with the psychiatrist who prescribed it to track my progress and I attended therapy sessions once a week.
 


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