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User Reviews for Venlafaxine to treat Anxiety

Also known as: Effexor, Effexor XR

The following information is NOT intended to endorse any particular medication. While these reviews might be helpful, they are not a substitute for the expertise, knowledge and judgement of healthcare practitioners.

Venlafaxine Rating Summary

User Ratings
28% (83)
20% (60)
12% (35)
4% (12)
3% (8)
5% (14)
2% (7)
4% (11)
3% (9)
19% (57)
6.7/10 Average Rating
296 ratings from 316 user reviews

Compare all 141 medications used in the treatment of Anxiety.

Reviews for Venlafaxine

Rajin · Taken for 1 to 6 months May 3, 2020

“I found it very effective with almost no side effects. I had certain events that I had to go through that raised my blood pressure to very high levels. Venlafaxine helped to sleep really well at its maximum dosage of 150 mg to 9-10 hours. After almost a week, my BP started to drop. My doctor gradually reduced the dosage by 25% and my BP returned to normal. I would highly recommend it to anyone to talk to their doctor. Its cost is almost too low to mention. Monthly bill about 15-20 Canadian dollars. 70% comes back from insurance.”

9 / 10
K · Taken for 2 to 5 years April 19, 2020

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I knew my IBS was directly affected by my anxiety and depression, so I went to a doctor to be put on meds to help with that. Effexor worked wonders! I was able to put back on the 40lbs. I had lost from being sick ALL the time. And zero panic attacks. It's not as good at helping my depression, but it is noticeably better still. The only issue I have with it is that it absolutely WRECKS my stomach if I miss even a single dose, so I have to be really careful about that. But I mean, it's made my life so much more liveable that I consider that a small issue.”

9 / 10
Anonymous · Taken for less than 1 month March 14, 2020

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “On effexor for 2 weeks anxiety has increased when I take it. Hoping it will kick in soon Not many side effects.”

5 / 10
Sara Jane · Taken for 1 to 6 months March 14, 2020

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “Effexor is helping me calm down and it’s helping my relationship with my boyfriend. I got put on it for my agitation, irritability , anxiety, social anxiety. I no longer am snappy and argumentative. I know people say it’s hard to withdraw off but it’s saving my life and I plan to stay on it for a long time. Thumbs up”

10 / 10
Maxxi · Taken for 1 to 6 months March 7, 2020

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “Put on lots of weight on this tablet Apart from that it’s pretty good”

3 / 10
Dani · Taken for 6 months to 1 year February 27, 2020

“I've been on venlafaxine 75mg for 7 months. Have been dealing with general anxiety and OCD all my adult life but never taken meds before. First positive effect was not tearing up all the time over a sudden wave of grief. At 2 months I wasn't depressed at all anymore. I don't get stuck in the obsessive anxiety spirals anymore. I think I still experience the feelings of fear and sadness and regret but they don't consume me every day and color my every thought. During the first 2 weeks I experienced dry mouth, nausea and headaches. I take the dose in the morning and if I forget, the next night I will wake up in cold sweat. I haven't noticed other side effects. If I forget for ~12h I don't notice a difference. I'm a 30-year-old woman.”

9 / 10
aimeejuniper February 25, 2020

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I'm a 27 y/o female, good health but have GAD and MDD. I began taking Effexor XR when I began having panic attacks while driving. I began with 37.5mg for 4 weeks, then upped to 75mg after that. After 3 months, I began to sweat in my sleep despite not feeling overheated. I began to suffer from sexual dysfunction, lost my libido and had difficulty reaching an orgasm (neither had been an issue previously). My appetite increased and I gained 25lbs in 1 year. I also noticed I felt very "flat" emotionally. I wrote this because I feel like positive reviews are lacking. Effexor absolutely improved my anxiety. The side effects were unpleasant but not severe. Stopping this medication suddenly can cause withdrawal symptoms, so when I switched to a new one, I slowly tapered off it by opening the capsule and counting the granules, reducing them by about 4 per day. I did not suffer from any "brain zaps" or any withdrawal symptoms.”

8 / 10
FreeTrog February 24, 2020

“When I was first prescribed Venlofaxine X-ray 75mg it zombified me and I spent the next 2 months feeling hungover, headaches, dizziness and wanting to sleep ALL day. During the 3rd month I started to feel a little better. At my next check-up my dr upped the dose to 150mg. Again I spent about a month and a half feeling tired, dizziness, headaches. Now 9 months later I still have days where I feel emotionally exhausted, and I’ve noticed when I haven’t slept well the night before I get the “whooshing” sound in my head, and can ‘hear’ my eyes move when I look somewhere a little too quick (so relieved to read others have experienced this too haha), other than those I am honestly feeling so much better. The worst side effect for me to deal with is a nil sex drive. Yes there are a lot of horror stories out there regarding this medication, but one persons bad experience shouldn’t discount it for you.”

8 / 10
Anonymous · Taken for 6 months to 1 year February 14, 2020

“I never understood why antidepressants were linked to suicidality, until I tried Effexor. I had been on lexapro for 8 years for anxiety, but got fed up with the apathy and loss of libido, and it just wan't working well. Switched to Effexor XR, was on 75mg for a total of 6 months. I slowly became more and more depressed, agitated, and began to have suicidal thoughts daily- I've never had any of these problems before- I was taking these drugs for anxiety after all, not depression. I was extremely numb emotionally, and lacked any semblance of empathy, compassion, or affection as a result. In a way, this medication numbed me to the idea of death, whereby suicide seemed ok. Tapering off and feeling back to normal. Horrible, horrible drug, for me at least...”

1 / 10
Anonymous · Taken for 1 to 2 years February 12, 2020

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I’ve tried many different drugs for anxiety and depression, the last being Lexapro which did nothing to help me. Gave Effexor a try and I’ve noticed a big difference. I’m able to go out in public more without getting anxious, I rarely get depressed, and my mood has improved tremendously. No side effects. Just be careful to take it every single day and don’t miss a dose; my nurse practitioner said people feel terrible if they do”

10 / 10
Anonymous · Taken for 6 months to 1 year January 31, 2020

“Horrible drug for me. Was on lexapro for years before it stopped working, so switched to Effexor 75. Makes me feel agitated, restless, anxious, “tired and wired”, burnt out and crash from any source of stress, also suicidal thoughts which I never used to have, eyelid twitching, trembling/tremor, Ttansient tinnitus/fullness in ears, jaw clenching and teeth grinding. Can’t wait to get off this garbage.”

1 / 10
Dreadnaut · Taken for 2 to 5 years January 26, 2020

“I was on 150mg venlafaxine for over two years. I recently got off it and ended up in the ER for having what seemed like a 3 hour seizure. It came on the night after my last dose with a "spasm" in my chest and neck, I went to the ER immediately for fear of Seratonin Syndrome. This spasming spread to my entire body after about 3-4 hours. It was one of the scariest times of my life (and I been through it all!). They eventually gave me a low dose and shot me up with benzos and I stopped convulsing after 15-20 mins. After dealing with the ridiculous side effects- "brain zaps," a swishing sound in my head when I moved my eyes to quickly to the right or left, twitching, feverish cold sweats from withdrawal if I missed a dose, etc. Next day they put me on a low dose of Prozac-20mg, which stopped the withdrawal symptoms and is commonly used for this exact situation. Apparently I was titrated off the Effexor too fast- I hope this helps someone, you will get through this!!”

1 / 10
Daisy January 10, 2020

“I have been on this medication- extended release- for about a week now. I feel it is working pretty well and I am not having any of the side effects that I've seen a lot of people mention. I was worried I would experience the withdrawal symptoms that people experience if they don't take it at the same time everyday, and nothing has happened. I feel pretty much normal and I am sleeping fine. Not overly tired in the day either after I take it. No constipation or bowel problems. It's not working AS WELL with blocking out the anxious thoughts as the viibryd did, but I will have to give it more time.”

7 / 10
Beeeca January 6, 2020

“Felt no improvement on venlafaxine. When I increased to 112.5mg my BP sky rocketed. I was hyper irritable, extreme mood swings, racing thoughts, feeling out of control, rapid pulse, panic like symptoms, difficulty breathing, dizziness (for app 5 days). Started to taper off. At a dose of 75mg migraines, dizziness, fatigue, extreme relationship damaging mood swings, dark thoughts, isolation, difficulty concentrating and forming sentences, feeling like losing my mind for about 7 days. This is normally not my behaviour. I took this drug to help with my work anxiety (I am a nurse). What a mistake. After 7 days I went down to 37.5mg and again I felt SO sick. Flu-like symptoms, no sex drive, difficulty having conversations/concentrating at work. It is day 7 on 37.5 and tonight I will not take it. I HATE THIS DRUG. I have tried citalopram before which was a way better drug for me. Withdrawal was easy. Effexor withdrawal feels like I've poisoned myself.”

1 / 10
Catwoman · Taken for 1 to 6 months January 4, 2020

“I have been on this drug for about nine weeks now. My paxil quit working back (which I have taken for at least a decade) in September and I waited thinking I was just going crazy, before I finally went to the doctor and found out that the Paxil wasn’t working anymore. After being on this for almost 3 months, I have insomnia, no appetite and have lost 15 pounds in this timeframe, still bad anxiety, dry mouth and fatigue. I am going back to the doctor this week to switch to something else. I was on Prozac before Paxil and am hopeful that may be the answer. Exercise and meditation do not even help. Ug”

2 / 10
Marq · Taken for 10 years or more January 2, 2020

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I have been on it for over 20 years now. It works very well. The only issue I have is it's not a cure.”

10 / 10
Anonymous · Taken for 1 to 6 months December 27, 2019

“Switched to this after Lexapro stopped being effective. This medication gave me dizziness and nausea like you wouldn't believe. If I didn't take it exactly on time, I'd start to get withdrawal effects, like brain zaps, which are miserable. I ate but never felt full. Stopped this and got on Zoloft and felt much better. Some docs won't even prescribe this anymore. Beware! GAD, anxiety”

1 / 10
Lazapro · Taken for less than 1 month December 27, 2019

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “This medication Effexor was a life saver for me. I took prozac 20 Mg. It worked for a week or 2 and then I had to raise the dosage, until I got to 60 mg. My depression was treated but my anxiety was not. I kept having anxiety attacks every now and then. It depends on what form of anxiety u have. Prozac helped with not panicking in stressful situations but did not help with my fear thoughts. With norepinephrine things drastically changed. Though, when I raised from 37.5 to 75 mg my anxiety raised waaaay up. If u want to start at 75 mg make sure u take half and the other half at least after 4 hours until u build up tolerance. Hope it helps u too!!!”

10 / 10
CC · Taken for 1 to 2 years December 18, 2019

“Took this drug venlafaxine for a year for GAD, went from 37.5mg to 150mg. Lost my appetite completely, had other unpleasant side effects too, but the loss of appetite is the worst. Decided to withdraw this past September, was off of it completely by the end of October. Lost 30 pounds in one month weaning off of it that I haven't gained back. Appetite still has not returned, I'm now living on Reglan in order to eat/survive. Withdrawal symptoms were manageable with tapering, but this loss of appetite is literally really hard on me. I wish I'd never taken it. It seems to work well for my daughter, but not for me. Worried there may be some long term gastrointestinal damage.”

1 / 10
Ed276447 · Taken for 5 to 10 years December 17, 2019

“I have taken this medication for about 10 years for generalised anxiety disorder (GAD). I took the 75mg XR extended release version. I found that if I took a higher dose it made me jittery. This medication did not stop my anxiety completely, especially anticipatory anxiety about large events, but I have been able to live a normal life. I have recently switched medication as I found the venlafaxine pooped out, the first signs of which were me getting irritable and easily stressed. I then had a breakdown with bad anxiety. Doctor tried combining v BC venlafaxine with mirtazapine but it made my anxiety worse.”

7 / 10
Laurenressel12 · Taken for 6 months to 1 year December 13, 2019

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “Effexor has been a life saver for me! I tried Zoloft first because that’s what worked for a lot of my friends. Zoloft made me very sick so I was switched to Effexor XR and I feel amazing!!’ I had been living my life after having kids, but sick to my stomach 24/7 and having majorly anxiety attacks. I’d have to leave work but no more. I still get anxious here and there but am able to cope with it now! Effexor isn’t for everyone but it worked and still works for me. The only thing I can say is a down side to it is I don’t always sleep as well as I did before starting it but life could be worse.”

9 / 10
Andrea D. · Taken for 6 months to 1 year November 25, 2019

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I started taking Effexor 75mg for my anxiety at 22yrs old when lexapro and Prozac were no longer working for me. I immediately felt relief after I started taking it. I am very bad at taking it at the same time everyday/remembering to take it every single day and have experienced some of the most horrendous withdrawal symptoms. I start to notice it about 6-7 hours after a missed dose. I’ll start to feel off balance, headache, fatigue, flu-like feeling, vomiting, etc. This drug is amazing if you remember to take it but it is definitely something you need to be on long-term. Highly addictive & horrible withdrawal symptoms.”

6 / 10
Shelly November 22, 2019

“This medication works for me! I've had depression on and off for years and found out through therapy that the depression was a side effect of anxiety that was in the drivers seat my whole life! Therapy wasn't enough so I was put on the generic of Effexor. It has been life changing!!!! No anti depression or anti-anxiety med comes without a cost, so you have to decide what side you can live with. My side effects: 1. I yawned a lot at first but it goes away. 2. I'm a post-menopausal woman, my libido was pretty low before the drug, but non-existent now. I might have felt differently before but now this is not a deal breaker, 4. CRAZY dreams. That's it. No scary stuff. I have not had any brain zaps if I am late with the meds. It has given me a new lease on life. I'm not tired and it directly squashes my anxiety in a way that I am still feel normal but have a clear perspective. Someday this might change but right now it works for me.”

8 / 10
Jay T · Taken for less than 1 month November 14, 2019

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “DO NOT TAKE THIS DRUG I have had very bad anxiety for about 2 years now and I have been given venlafaxine one time to see if it helps. It was the worse experience ever I took 1 capsule and experienced problems for 2 maybe more weeks. I had the worst anxiety ever the scariest dreams and my vision on life was completely different I felt sick for about 3 days my vision was blurred and I barely remember anything. It's been about 9 months since then and I still think about the horrific time I had”

1 / 10
Annie November 2, 2019

“I’ve been taking 75mg venlafaxine slow release once a day for 5 1/2 weeks and would recommend it! Day 1 I took it at 8pm, woke up at 1am with horrible nausea and vomiting, was really shaky and sweaty. Day 2 freezing but had sweaty palms, clenched jaw, couldn’t focus, felt exhausted and had a headache. Day 3-7 felt stoned, slept a lot, no appetite. Day 8 Felt really high, had huge pupils and sweaty palms. Day 9 appetite started to come back, but was shaky and exhausted in the evening. Day 10-14 spotting and tired. Day 16 exhausted, couldn’t focus, had night sweats. Day 16-23 spotting and felt very dopey. Day 26 felt good. Day 27 a period started (I’m on the pill). Day 28, felt ok. Day 29 forgot to take the meds, took the missed pill in the morning, no adverse side effects. Day 30-31 tired, but ok. Day 32-38 felt like my normal self, without the anxiety and constant rumination! Stick with it for 6 weeks, it takes a while for your body to get used to it.”

9 / 10