- Drugs like this one have raised the chance of suicidal thoughts or actions in children and young adults. The risk may be greater in people who have had these thoughts or actions in the past. All people who take Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) need to be watched closely. Call the doctor right away if signs like low mood (depression), nervousness, restlessness, grouchiness, panic attacks, or changes in mood or actions are new or worse. Call the doctor right away if any thoughts or actions of suicide occur.
- This medicine is not approved for use in children. Talk with the doctor.
Uses of Pristiq:
- It is used to treat low mood (depression).
- It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.
What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Pristiq?
- If you have an allergy to desvenlafaxine or any other part of Pristiq (desvenlafaxine).
- If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
- If you have narrow-angle glaucoma.
- If you are taking any of these drugs: Linezolid or methylene blue.
- If you have taken certain drugs used for low mood (depression) like isocarboxazid, phenelzine, or tranylcypromine or drugs used for Parkinson's disease like selegiline or rasagiline in the last 14 days. Taking Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) within 14 days of those drugs can cause very bad high blood pressure.
- If you are taking another drug that has the same drug in it.
- If you are taking or will be taking another drug like this one.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with Pristiq (desvenlafaxine).
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while I take Pristiq?
- Tell all of your health care providers that you take Pristiq (desvenlafaxine). This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert until you see how Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) affects you.
- To lower the chance of feeling dizzy or passing out, rise slowly if you have been sitting or lying down. Be careful going up and down stairs.
- Do not stop taking Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) all of a sudden without calling your doctor. You may have a greater risk of side effects. If you need to stop Pristiq (desvenlafaxine), you will want to slowly stop it as ordered by your doctor.
- High blood pressure has happened with Pristiq (desvenlafaxine). Have your blood pressure checked as you have been told by your doctor.
- Avoid drinking alcohol while taking Pristiq (desvenlafaxine).
- Talk with your doctor before you use other drugs and natural products that slow your actions.
- This medicine may raise the chance of bleeding. Sometimes, bleeding can be life-threatening. Talk with the doctor.
- Some people may have a higher chance of eye problems with Pristiq (desvenlafaxine). Your doctor may want you to have an eye exam to see if you have a higher chance of these eye problems. Call your doctor right away if you have eye pain, change in eyesight, or swelling or redness in or around the eye.
- This medicine can cause low sodium levels. Very low sodium levels can be life-threatening, leading to seizures, passing out, trouble breathing, or death. Talk with the doctor.
- This medicine may affect certain lab tests. Tell all of your health care providers and lab workers that you take Pristiq (desvenlafaxine).
- If you are 65 or older, use Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) with care. You could have more side effects.
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) while you are pregnant.
- Taking Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) in the third trimester of pregnancy may lead to some health problems in the newborn. Talk with the doctor.
- Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.
How is this medicine (Pristiq) best taken?
Use Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.
- Take with or without food.
- Swallow whole. Do not chew, break, or crush.
- To gain the most benefit, do not miss doses.
- Take Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) at the same time of day.
- Keep taking Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) as you have been told by your doctor or other health care provider, even if you feel well.
What do I do if I miss a dose?
- Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
- If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
- Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)
What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?
WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
- Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
- Signs of low sodium levels like headache, trouble focusing, memory problems, feeling confused, weakness, seizures, or change in balance.
- Signs of bleeding like throwing up blood or throw up that looks like coffee grounds; coughing up blood; blood in the urine; black, red, or tarry stools; bleeding from the gums; vaginal bleeding that is not normal; bruises without a reason or that get bigger; or any bleeding that is very bad or that you cannot stop.
- Signs of high blood pressure like very bad headache or dizziness, passing out, or change in eyesight.
- Signs of lung or breathing problems like shortness of breath or other trouble breathing, cough, or fever.
- Chest pain or pressure.
- Feeling very tired or weak.
- Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not there).
- Some men have had sexual problems when taking Pristiq (desvenlafaxine). These include lowered interest in sex and not able to get an erection. Call your doctor right away if you have sexual problems when taking Pristiq (desvenlafaxine).
- A very bad and sometimes deadly health problem called serotonin syndrome may happen. The risk may be greater if you take Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) with drugs for depression, migraines, or certain other drugs. Call your doctor right away if you have agitation; change in balance; confusion; hallucinations; fever; fast or abnormal heartbeat; flushing; muscle twitching or stiffness; seizures; shivering or shaking; sweating a lot; very bad diarrhea, upset stomach, or throwing up; or very bad headache.
What are some other side effects of Pristiq?
All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
- Upset stomach or throwing up.
- Hard stools (constipation).
- Dry mouth.
- Not able to sleep.
- Feeling sleepy.
- Not hungry.
- Feeling tired or weak.
- You may see the tablet shell in your stool. This is normal and not a cause for concern.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
How do I store and/or throw out Pristiq?
- Store at room temperature.
- Protect from light.
- Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
Consumer information use
- If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
- Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
- Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
- Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
- This medicine comes with an extra patient fact sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it with care. Read it again each time Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) is refilled. If you have any questions about Pristiq (desvenlafaxine), please talk with the doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
More about Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)
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- Drug class: serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors
Other brands: Khedezla