Anafranil is a popular psychotropic agent taken by people to treat OCD, or obsessive-compulsive disorder. This medication has certain structural similarities with a group of meds called TCAs, or tricyclic antidepressants. Nowadays, doctors often prescribe it to treat OCD because Anafranil was approved by the FDA for this use in 1991, but some patients also take it to treat anxiety disorders, panic attacks and major depression. Basically, the exact mechanism of action of this medicine is not fully understood, and it’s thought to improve the actions of such important neurotransmitters as serotonin and norepinephrine by prolonging their activity and blocking their reuptake. Anafranil is also famous for its anticholinergic properties, and it means that this medication also blocks the action of acetylcholine.
Besides, it has weak antihistamine properties that result in its mild sedative effects.
List of Anafranil Side Effects
Like other medications, Anafranil may cause certain side effects, such as the following:
Dry mouth and upset stomach;
Nausea and tremors;
Constipation and heartburn;
Unusual tiredness and anorexia;
Nervousness and dizziness;
Sudden weight gain and increased sweating;
Sexual dysfunction and respiratory problems;
Low blood pressure and allergic reactions;
Sudden visual changes.
The good news is that these symptoms are rare, and more of them are mild, but if they persist and worsen, it’s necessary to visit doctors. In rare cases, patients who take Anafranil may end up with the following serious side effects that require immediately medical assistance:
Suicidal thoughts and behaviors;
Available Preparations and Recommended Doses
You can find Anafranil as oral pills that come in different strengths, from 25 mg to 75 mg. Your treatment should be started with lower doses that can be increased gradually to avoid possible side effects and other health complications. This medication is better tolerated when you take them with regular meals.
To treat OCD in adult patients, it’s recommended to start this treatment with 25 mg of Anafranil taken orally once a day. This standard dose can be increased up to 250 ml within a few weeks. To reduce a risk of having unwanted gastrointestinal side effects, use regular doses with meals. Some patients take Anafranil a single dose right before their bedtime if they tolerate it well. Children and adolescents take this medication in lower doses, and it’s not designed to be used by kids who are younger than 10 years old.
Potential Drug Interactions
There are certain medications that shouldn’t be combined with Anafranil because of dangerous drug interactions. For instance, this treatment shouldn’t be mixed with other tricyclic antidepressants, antiarrhythmic pills, meds that prolong QT intervals and other drugs that increase serotonin levels in the brain.