Amitriptyline for Treating Symptoms of Depression, Know its Effectiveness and Side Effects

Amitriptyline for Treating Symptoms of Depression

Amitriptyline indicates a type of tricyclic antidepressant. It primarily affects various chemicals present in the human brain, which may remain in unbalanced condition for all individuals suffering from depression problem. Amitriptyline helps in treatment of various symptoms related to human depression and even one can use it to fulfill various other purposes associated with health care sector.

Amitriptyline treats the problem of depression by increasing the already existing serotonin lvels and norepinephrine levels present in human brain.

Effectiveness of Amitriptyline in Treating Symptoms of Depression

Effectiveness of Amitriptyline in Treating Symptoms of Depression

Amitriptyline has proved to be highly effective to treat the symptoms of a large numbers of depressive disorders. One can use the medication off-label to treat different conditions along with other treatments or in case when alternative treatments fail to work properly. These include conditions of insomnia, chronic pain and fibromyalgia. Amitriptyline has obtained recommendations on the pain ladder of WHO to treat various pains related to nerves and is unresponsive to opioid type of drugs including morphine.

Side Effects of Amitriptyline in Treating Symptoms of Depression

Amitriptyline is safe but it also has side effects. If you belong to the age group between 18 years and 60 years and you have not consumed any other medicine or undergone through any other medical treatment, you would likely experience following side effects of Amitriptyline:

  • Headache, dry mouth, diarrhea, constipation and dysfunction of sexual organs.
  • May increase various risks related to thoughts of committing suicide or abnormal behavior in young adult people.
  • Amitriptyline may result in side effects like drowsiness and affect the ability of a person to operate machines or driving vehicles. Even few people could develop tolerance associated with the effect.
  • Risks related to heart problems, rigidity of muscles, seizures, tremor, increase in sensitivity towards weight loss or gain, light, hair loss, rashes in skin and edema problem.
  • Over dosage or interaction may result in serotonin syndrome or symptoms related to hallucinations and agitation, fast heart beat rate, muscular tremor, dizziness, vomiting, nausea and diarrhea.
  • Amitriptyline may cause various withdrawal symptoms in combination with discontinuation in abrupt manner. Here, symptoms include headache, nausea and disturbance in sleeping and general tiredness.
  • Patients should never take Amitriptyline if they recently faced heart attack.
  • Never consume amitriptyline if you have utilized any MAO inhibitor during the last 14 days, like linezolid, isocarboxazid, methylene blue injection, rasagiline, phenelzine, tranylcypromine or selegiline.
  • Before you should choose to intake amitriptyline, you have to inform your doctor that you have consumed any antidepressant of SSRI during the last few weeks, like escitalopram or Lexapro, citalopram or Celexa, fluoxetine in the form of Sarafem, Prozac and Symbyax and similar others.
  • Patients may have thoughts to commit suicide during the first few weeks they start with the consumption of amitriptyline as antidepressant, particularly, if the person is less than 24 years. In this case, they should schedule appointment with doctors regularly for about initial 12 weeks of their treatment.
  • Report any of the worsening or new symptoms you face to your doctor. These may be of anything related to changes in your behavior or mood, panic attacks, anxiety, trouble in sleeping or various difficult feelings, like hostile, impulsive, irritated, hostile, agitated, restlessness, hyperactive, aggressive, highly depressed or have thoughts related to reaching harm to yourself or commit suicide.

Go for immediate medical help if you encounter any side effects or find signs related to any allergic reaction with intake of amitriptyline, which may difficulty in inhaling oxygen, hives, swelling in your face, throat and tongue or in your lips. Call to your doctor immediately, if you face following problems:

  • A light-headed feeling
  • Unusual behavior or thoughts
  • Pressure or chest pain, pain spreading to shoulder and jaw areas in your body
  • Feelings of nausea or sweating in abnormal manner
  • Pounding of your heartbeats or fluttering in the chest
  • Hallucinations or confusion
  • Convulsions or Seizure
  • Difficulty or painful in urination
  • Severe problem of constipation
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising problem
  • Illness, sudden weakness, chills, fever, mouth sores, sore throat, swollen or red gums, difficulty in swallowing process.


Amitriptyline acts as an effective antidepressant for treating symptoms of depression, but it initially causes side effects of drowsiness and has withdrawal syndrome if stopped without following the doctors advice. Therefore, in order to avail of maximum benefits from the medicine, you should strictly follow the recommendations given by your doctor.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:November 14, 2017

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