Effexor XR is an extended-release version of the drug venlafaxine, available in capsules of 37.5 mg, 75 mg and 100 mg. Doctors prescribe Effexor XR to treat depression, generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder and social phobia. Many side effects are possible.
Effexor XR is an antidepressant classified as a selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SSNRI or SNRI). It restores the balance of serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain.
The most common side effect associated with Effexor XR is nausea, occurring in up to 35 percent of participants in some clinical studies, as detailed by eMedTV. Nausea is the most frequent reason patients stop taking this medication.
Common Side Effects
Many other side effects are common as well. They include altered taste, blurred vision, constipation or diarrhea, decreased sex drive, dizziness, dry mouth, fatigue, indigestion, insomnia, sweating and weakness.
Long-term use is physically addicting, and some patients find it very difficult to discontinue the medication. Withdrawal symptoms can linger for months, many similar to the common side effects. Patients also might experience vomiting, memory loss and hallucinations.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires warnings on Effexor XR labeling. Children, adolescents and young adults have an increased risk of suicide when taking Effexor XR. The medication can cause some people to experience worsening mental health symptoms and unusual behavior.