Pristiq Injury Lawyers
Personal Injury Lawyers - Representing People Nationwide
Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) is a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) antidepressant made by Wyeth. It is a synthetic form of venlafaxine, which Wyeth also markets as Effexor. Pristiq has also been considered for the treatment of menopausal hot flashes and night sweats. So far, however, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved it only for treating depression.
Unlike SSRIs, which act more selectively on serotonin, SNRIs also act on a second neurotransmitter in the brain, namely norepinephrine. SNRIs have shown slightly improved antidepressant efficacy over SSRIs, perhaps partly due to this dual mechanism, and slightly less severe side effects. For these reasons, although newer and with fewer of them having been developed, SNRIs and are now among the most widely used antidepressants.
Unfortunately, due its relatively short half-life, Pristiq has been implicated with higher rates of discontinuation syndrome than those for other SNRI and SSRI antidepressant medications. While symptoms associated with discontinuation syndrome tend to be mild, the condition can be serious because it can result in:
- Significant discomfort
- Work absenteeism and other psychosocial problems
- Medical and psychiatric misdiagnosis
- Unwillingness by the patient to use indicated psychotropic medications in the future
Some former users of Pristiq have described the side effects associated with their discontinuation syndrome as "intolerable", and many were unable to cease use because of extremely long-term withdrawal symptoms.
Side effects associated with the use of Pristiq for which medical help should be sought immediately include:
- mood changes, including anxiety, panic attacks, irritability, aggressiveness, agitation, mental or physical hyperactivity (mania), thoughts of suicide or hurting oneself
- trouble sleeping
- convulsions (seizure)
- rigid muscles
- high fever
- fast or uneven heartbeats
- overactive reflexes
- loss of coordination
- cough or coughing up blood
- chest tightness, trouble breathing, shallow breathing, or breathing that stops
Other side effects associated with the use of Pristiq include:
- dizziness, drowsiness, or tired feeling
- dry mouth
- loss of appetite
- sleep problems (insomnia)
- mild headache or blurred vision
- decreased sex drive, impotence, or difficulty having an orgasm
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of using Pristiq, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact a qualified pharmaceutical injury attorney for an evaluation of your case.