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User Reviews for Venlafaxine to treat Anxiety

Also known as: Effexor, Effexor XR

Venlafaxine has an average rating of 6.6 out of 10 from a total of 331 ratings for the treatment of Anxiety. 59% of those users who reviewed Venlafaxine reported a positive effect, while 27% reported a negative effect.

Venlafaxine Rating Summary

6.6/10 average rating

331 ratings from 348 user reviews.

Compare all 141 medications used in the treatment of Anxiety.


Reviews for Venlafaxine

Lee1309 May 3, 2021

“Used for a couple of years worked brilliant but then 'pooped out' was gutted minimal side effects worked so well hope it helps you All the best”

10 / 10
Flower · Taken for less than 1 month May 2, 2021

“My doctor recommended this drug after being on mirtazapine for about 15 years. It was a terrible choice for me. I had probably every side effect and more. I’m post menopausal and my hot flashes, in the middle of the night especially, were intense. 20 times worse than before this drug. I woke up 3-6 times a night, many of which I was sweating heavily and exhausted. I also had nausea, stomach pains and diarrhea. Missed a number of days of work because I had such bad insomnia and didn’t feel good until mid day. Additionally, when I woke up at the beginning of my day I was close to panic attacks until I took the drug. I don’t think this was a coincidence. None of these severe side effects happened with my prior medication. Going back to mirtazapine as soon as I wean off this awful drug.”

1 / 10
Missanxiety · Taken for less than 1 month May 2, 2021

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I was prescribed Effexor XR 75mg and at first it somewhat helped my anxiety. I stopped taking it after about a week and a half because it made me completely lose my appetite. No withdrawals. I tried to start taking it again yesterday morning, felt fine all day until about 5pm. I started feeling super dizzy and spaced out. Almost like I had been drugged. Felt out of reality somehow and detached. I will never take this medication again. The way I felt yesterday was so horrible it's not worth it for me to take.”

2 / 10

Frequently asked questions

Sarah January 28, 2021

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I have severe anxiety and regular depression from time to time. I’ve taken Lexapro, Prozac, and Zoloft. They eventually quit working for me. I had so much anxiety after work that I would like to have an alcoholic drink and sometimes a cigarette to calm my nerves. The problem with this is because alcohol makes anxiety worse if you drink more than two drinks. So it was an endless cycle. I was also getting to the point where I couldn’t get off the couch and had no motivation to do anything, Taking a shower was hard for me. I was sleeping a lot!!! Start out on theEffexor XR 37.5mg dose for about a week or two before moving up to 75 mg. At first it made me feel really weird, my mind would race and I was having a hard time sleeping. I stuck it out! I am now taking 75 mg and I’m so much better! I get up at 6:00 am when I used to sleep until 9:00. I go to the gym 3 days a week, I get dressed up and now I have a part time job. Effexor has literally changed my life!!”

10 / 10
ks · Taken for 6 months to 1 year August 23, 2020

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “If you are reading these reviews and having anxiety about taking a medicine I get it. The best advice I can offer is go into with a mindset that this is going to help you. In the scariest time of my life when I had panic disorder, was having trouble eating and sleeping Effexor saved me. I took Lexapro terrified to take it and had horrible reactions. This drug makes me feel like myself minus panicking. I didn't feel like it kicked in until about 3 months. The only thing is it does make you feel a like more "flat" but I was a little over emotional so it helped with this. I've been on this for almost a year and would recommend trying it.”

8 / 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
Cleveland March 2, 2021

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I’ve had depression anxiety my whole life and I’m diagnosed major depression and generalized anxiety disorder. I tried all the other antidepressants didn’t really know if they worked or not, new Dr. slowly tapered me up on Effexor. That was about a year ago... The side effects weren’t terrible some nausea and insomnia for like a week and then after that the side effects were gone. I feel so much better honestly and I’m not just saying that because the Lexapro and Cymbalta I never knew if they were working or not. This helps with my anxiety a lot and rumination and also this is the first winter I’ve enjoyed in at least a decade. Also I have an eight-year-old four-year-old and three-month-old all girls and virtual schooling is still on, so it definitely helps me be more patient And takes the edge off so I don’t yell and scream in a fit of exasperation. I was also afraid of getting postpartum but I honestly haven’t felt any of that thank the Lord.”

9 / 10

More FAQ

Panic guy March 22, 2021

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “Since my middle east deployment I've dealt with panic attacks. It got to the point I was severely agoraphobia, not even able to leave my home to drive to the gas station a mile away. VA SSRIs never worked. After being drug to the local ER due to severe brain fogginess, ER physician suggested norepinephrine might be the issue, not the serotonin. Dr also took it and said to give Effexor XR a go. 3 weeks later I believe he may be right. I no longer am focusing on every little beat my heart makes. I can drive again. I can go places. I'm not perfect yet but major improvements have happened. Fogginess is still there a tad bit but not nearly as horrible as it was 3 weeks ago. It's not even fully in my system yet. If you have taken all the SSRIs there are with no results, try this. It works. I've heard withdrawals are real bad but I'm not worried about that right now. It just feels good to feel a bit more normal again. Praise God. P.S. I'm still able to "perform" with the wife. Another huge relief.”

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
Mitra_ August 9, 2014

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “Have suffered from bouts of severe anxiety over the last few years that would leave me bedridden, suicidal, unable to work or eat. Tried Zoloft, Celexa, Lexapro, Cymbalta, Luvox and honestly thought nothing would ever work for me. All made me worse. Psych doctor wanted to try Effexor XR but I was worried about the withdrawing from it - after trying everything else I finally agreed. Has taken a month to feel a difference. I'm enjoying things again, not chewed up by horrible anxiety, I'm actually HAPPY?! 1st month on it was so challenging - very low, anxious, exhausted, nauseous. But now no side effects. I feel like a light's gone on. Like I am getting my life back. I could sob with relief. Truly believed I'd never get better, but here I am.”

8 / 10
Arthur55 · Taken for 1 to 6 months January 6, 2021

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “Have been on Effexor XR 75 mg for the last 4 weeks. Was prescribed it for depression, irritability, anger and anxiety. Like many of the reviews I was apprehensive of taking it as many of the reviews were negative but 4 weeks in I am starting to feel more normal again. Considerably less irritable and angry. I have noticed some emotional bluntness but its welcome over how I felt before. The first two weeks I noticed increased irritability, occasionally I still feel hot flushes or like my body is overheating. I have noticed my anxiety has improved and Im having less difficulty doing things like public speaking. I notice I'm laughing and smiling more which is a positive step.”

7 / 10
Anonymous · Taken for 1 to 2 years September 4, 2014

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “Have been on Effexor xr 75mg for about 1 year now for anxiety & panic attacks. I had a constant odd pain in my stomach (like butterflys and hunger). I would sweat uncontrollably & get dizzy & faint if I was put in a situation I wasn't comfortable with. I went to a Dr. who diagnosed me with anxiety and put me onto Effexor. The first 3 days were hell, every bad review I read on Google I could relate to, I even ended up going to the ER one night as I felt so nauseous and felt like I was losing control and could not stop freaking out. The Dr told me to stick to it, and promised it would get better. I'm so glad I did. I feel that this medication has saved me. I can almost live a normal life again.”

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 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
Mel April 20, 2021

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “So Effexor XR has been sitting on the counter for a month. I’m currently on Zoloft and it does nothing but make me worse I have to live off Xanax because my anxiety is so bad. I can’t even leave the house with out Xanax. I have read some good and bad reviews about Effexor I do believe I am going to give it a try finally. I hope it helps me I’m tired of living this way. Everyday wake up with anxiety can barely work had to get Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) just to make sure I don’t loose my job due to the way I feel. Effexor xr 37.5 is what I’m starting wish me luck”

4 / 10
ATTORNEYSA · Taken for 1 to 6 months July 29, 2019

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I have been on Effexor for just over a month and I can say that I'm rather surprised. I am a 25 year old male, who has been on antidepressants for almost 12 years (unfortunately I was diagnosed with depression and a social anxiety disorder at a very young age). Prior to being prescribed Effexor - I was on zoloft for a few years. Zoloft worked, but as time went on, started to loose it's effectiveness. With Effexor I have more energy and feel that I can get through the day. I hope this medicine continues to work for anyone suffering <3”

8 / 10
Happy in Canada · Taken for 10 years or more March 10, 2014

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I have been on Effexor for the past 10 years - I started having panic attacks as a child although I didn't know at the time what was going on - when I was 17 the doctor prescribed Valium that I took periodically when my anxiety got really bad - finally when I was 40 the doctor suggested I go on a very low dosage of Effexor (37.5mg) because he was sure I had generalized anxiety disorder - what a difference this has made in my life - felt"weird" the first few weeks but now I have very little anxiety and really no side effects except maybe lower libido. I had no idea how much anxiety I had been living with all my life.”

9 / 10
Ypiscis · Taken for less than 1 month May 31, 2018

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “Hello everyone. Ok I posted May 19 and this is my update. So I stopped sertraline and started taking Effexor 75 mg capsules. The Doctor advise to stop sertraline slowly so the first week I took Effexor 75 mg and half of sertraline which is 50 mg. The second week I took Effexor 75 mg and setraline 25 mg. And now just Effexor . And now just 75 mg of Effexor (venlafaxine ) . I feel so much better . My anxiety has almost stopped and I remind my self to take deep breaths . I'm sleeping better and I’m pushing my self lot more. I refuse to sleep during the day and all that is helping me. I’m posting this because I know how it feels to feel helpless. So everyone keep pushing through this. Keep your head up, keep praying and keep positive. Love you all and good luck!!!!”


Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “First off, I want to say I never take the time to write reviews however I do end up myself reading everyone else's so I hope this helps someone! I'm 22 Female, and for about 4 years suffered from anxiety. First it started off as panic anxiety then with failure of trying medications Prozac, Zoloft, and lexapro, my head was just so much worse. I could feel the chemical imbalance I began getting daily depression and anxiety to the point I'd worry 24/7. It ruined relationships & made me seem crazy. I finally got on Effexor last month. CHANGED MY LIFE. I feel NORMAL again. Happy, no anxiety, energetic. Only side effects were yawning, vivid dreams, & at first jaw pain. I highly suggest this with panic/daily anxiety/depression mix! My fears are gone”

STEEL · Taken for 1 to 6 months April 17, 2019

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I owe a great thank you to Effexor. My cons are vivid dreaming and minor sleep difficulties. But the pros for myself, outweigh the bad. For the first time in 10+ years my anxious thoughts and sweats are almost nonexistent. I enjoy the taste of food again. And I feel like I have more purpose, I don’t walk around with the “I’m just here, useless” cloud over me. I will continue to fight to feel right, Effexor has definitely gave me my footing.”

9 / 10
Anonymous · Taken for less than 1 month February 3, 2021

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “10 days in on 37.5 and already feel decreased anxiety. Sleep issues still and some day time fatigue but I know this will pass with time. Worried about stopping them one day from all the reviews but I'm looking forward to taking a year to feel good.”

10 / 10
0521j0929d January 26, 2015

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I have been on Effexor XR for about a year, after switching from Paxil. It is a scary thing to read all these reviews, and question about whether you should or should not take it. I personally started for anxiety, and it has helped tremendously. To me having panic attacks is not a fun task, yes are there side effects but everything you put into your body does. Please try what your doctor recommends before you read all the reviews.”

10 / 10
Teetzy · Taken for less than 1 month February 8, 2021

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I started taking Effexor XR 3 days ago. So far I have just been nauseated so I got nausea meds. I’m starting to feel a difference already. I feel the effects of meds pretty early. I am really hoping this is my ‘miracle’ pill.”

9 / 10
Believer · Taken for 1 to 2 years October 3, 2019

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “Effexor has been great. I had been on 25-50 mg of zoloft for panic attacks and high anxiety and it had worked for a few years but then after I went off for 4 months and started getting them again, when I got back on it I got the worst morning panic with nausea, vomiting and IBS for three months. I didn't want to switch but it was getting so bad I'd have anxiety for most of the work day and was afraid I might have to miss work. It was a good thing my cubicle was right next to the bathroom during that time! Finally I told my pcp I was ready to try something else and she prescribed this Effexor ER. She told me to stop the zoloft and start 37.5 MG of ER venlafexine. It was night and day. No more panic attacks and no more morning nausea and vomiting and anxiety and IBS. It's been over a year and I still like it. I took it in the morning at first but switched it gradually to night because I sleep better that way.”

10 / 10
momof4minions August 22, 2017

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I started Effexor XR (generic version) about 3 weeks ago. I will admit, the bottle sat on my counter for a week before I took my first one, because the negative reviews terrified me. I finally took one and I am so glad I did! I have been on practically every anxiety/ depression med there is and had kind of lost hope with them working. I have also tried several different natural methods and they helped a little bit, but not nearly enough. I struggle mainly with anxiety and have for about 15 years now. By day 3, I had already noticed a difference. It's been 3 weeks & not only is my anxiety significantly better, I no longer have swollen joints or numbness in my hands & feet, I'm so much happier & way less stressed. Life changing!!”

10 / 10
SSKirby · Taken for 1 to 6 months March 13, 2014

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I have been on Effexor XR 75mg for two months now, after previously being on Zoloft and Celexa. The two other medications were not effective for my anxiety and depression, and they tended to make me either tired or foggy regardless of the time of day that I took them. I expected the tiredness to wear off, but the foggy feeling never did. My doctor prescribed Effexor XR, and it has been very effective for both my depression and anxiety symptoms. I am not 100% perfect, and I still have anxiety, but in the appropriate moments. The moments of unreasonable anxiety attacks are fewer and far between since starting the medicine. I had no negative side effects, and I take it every morning at 9am.”

9 / 10
Corri · Taken for 1 to 6 months January 1, 2021

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I was prescribed Efexor XR for anxiety. After taking 75mg for two weeks, the nightmare begins. Insomia, night sweats, horrific dreams and visions. I couldn't think or concentrate, I couldn't work or drive, my head was spinning, I couldn't talk properly. The headache was so bad it landed me in hospital. I was so tired and couldn't stop yawning. I actually thought I was going insane on this drug. Loss of appetite followed by drastic weight loss, diarrhoea. I persisted another week than thats when the electric shocks started through my body. They were horrendous and left me thinking there was something wrong with me neurologically. Against doctors advice, I went cold turkey off of this drug. The withdrawal was horrific but I was determined to get this stuff out of my body. Even 7 months off the drug, I still get some of the shocks and feel this drug has permanently damaged me. I would do your research well before considering this drug. Id NEVER touch it again. Worst experience of my life.”

1 / 10
Mj June 22, 2019

Effexor XR (venlafaxine): “I was absolutely hysterical, I got so anxious and depressed, I wanted to end my life. I put off taking medication for so long. I was hesitant to take effexor due to the reviews. Now that I’ve been on it for almost a month I already feel better. It changed my life, I’m not anxious and I’m able to go out and do things. I do get dry mouth, insomnia, tiredness, and my appetite decreased.”

9 / 10

This 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.