Thursday, August 13, 2015

Veniz XR uses and side effects

Veniz XR is a brand of Venlafaxine extended release preparation manufactured by Sun pharmaceuticals, India. Venlafaxine is an SNRI (Selective serotonin and Noradrenaline reuptake inhibitor) medication prescribed for depression, anxiety disorders, and nerve pain.

Uses of Veniz XR

This medication is primarily prescribed for depressive disorder. According to recent clinical trials it is found marginally more effective than Fluoxetine (Prodep™ / Prozac™). Therefore, it is commonly prescribed for resistant depression.

Veniz XR 75mg tablets

Depression is characterized by persistent low mood, inability to work due to lack of energy and inability to experience pleasure. In addition, patients with depression is at risk of committing suicide.
In addition, this medication is prescribed for Anxiety disorders such as social phobia, generalized anxiety disorder and panic disorder.

Artists depiction of Clinical Depression

Social phobia is characterized by persistent fear of negative evaluation of self by others and severe anxiety in social situations. e.g parties.

Panic disorder is characterized by sudden out of the blue anxiety attacks which results in fear of dying, breathlessness and chest/ muscle pain.

Panic attack

Generalised anxiety disorder is characterized by persistent anxiety and worries that impair functioning.

This medication also prescribed for nerve pain. Nerve pain is caused by damage or destruction of a pheripheral nerve. Common example would be phantom limb pain in amputees. In addition, this medication is also effective in nerve pain associated with Herpes Zoster (Shingles) infection.

Dosage and use of this medication

This medication is available as extended release capsules. Extended release preparations usually taken less frequently than their normal release preparations. E.g. Veniz XR is usually taken once daily and Veniz normal preparation taken twice daily. Usually dose range is around 37.5mg to 375mg daily. To prevent side effects take this medication with meals. Do not remove capsule or do not take the medication when the capsule is broken. Take this medication with a full glass of water.

Veniz 75mg capsules

If you experience side effects (Mentioned below), tell your doctor and do not stop this medication on your own (Unless in a medical emergency).

Tell your doctor if you have following conditions, before getting prescription

1.       Any heart disease
2.       High blood pressure
3.       High cholesterol
4.       Any liver disease
5.       Any kidney disease
6.       Bipolar disorder
7.       Bleeding problems
8.       Eye problems (Poor vision, glaucoma)

Increased blood pressure is a common side effect - Pic Wikimedia

Side effects of Veniz XR

Most commons side effects are nausea, gastritis, and dizziness. These side effects can be minimized by taking according to the above paragraph.

Take with full glass of water to minimize side effects - Pic - Deviant art

This medication can cause initial increase in anxiety when prescribed. But it is usually short lasting and wanes off after some time.

Another significant side effect is sexual dysfunction. It is manifested as both reduced sex drive and erectile dysfunction. Since depression and other psychiatry problems can also cause sexual dysfunction overall outcome would be the balance of both.

It can increase blood pressure in some people, therefore you need to tell your doctor if you are having high blood pressure or heart problems. In addition, this medication is known to cause heart beat irregularities, especially at higher doses.

In addition, Veniz XR is known to cause following side effects.

1.       Constipation
2.       Yawning
3.       Dry mouth
4.       Headache
5.       Reduced sleep
6.       Abnormal dreams
7.       Sexual problems
8.       Excessive Sweating
9.       Mania
10.   Agitation
11.   Incoordination

Veniz XR is an extended release medication in SNRI category and its generic name is Venlafaxine. It is prescribed for major depression, panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and social phobia. Main side effects are gastric disturbances and problematic side effects are increased blood pressure and sexual dysfunction.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Librium for alcohol withdrawal

Librium is a benzodiazepine class medication commonly prescribed for alcohol withdrawal. It reduces symptoms of alcohol withdrawal such as tremors, sleep problems and visual disturbances. In addition, it reduces chances of getting alcohol withdrawal seizures (fits).

Librium is the generic name of Chlordiazepoxide. It acts via activating GABA type A receptors in the brain. In addition, Librium is the first benzodiazepine to hit the market.

What are alcohol withdrawal symptoms?

Alcohol withdrawal is experienced by people who are dependent on alcohol. Once they stopped alcohol suddenly, they will experience tremors, poor sleep, nausea, fever and increased heart rate. Withdrawal symptoms usually develop within 6 - 12 hours from the last  drink.

Sometimes alcohol withdrawal can become dangerous. It is dangerous when you develop a condition called delirium tremens. Delirium tremens is characterized by severe withdrawal symptoms associated with perceptual disturbances such as visual hallucinations. In addition, during the phase of delirium tremens, person will experience severe fluctuations in blood pressure and body temperature.

Any type of alcohol can cause dependence and withdrawal

They behave aggressively toward imaginary visual hallucinations and could easily misinterpret other stimuli as strange and threatening. They show marked behavioural problems, especially at night.

Patient with a delirium tremens should be managed in an inward setting with a high dependency unit.

In addition, sometimes alcohol dependent person can develop alcohol withdrawal seizures or fits. It can also be harmful.

Because of these harmful withdrawal effects, alcohol dependent people should first consult a medical doctor before stopping alcohol.

Who are alcohol dependent people?

Alcohol dependent people have following symptoms,

1. Craving for alcohol
2. Tolerance for alcohol : Need large amount of alcohol to get intoxicated
3. Getting withdrawal symptoms described above
4. Continued alcohol use despite harmful consequences (Losing job, liver damage, family disharmony)
5. Unable to control alcohol taking behaviour
6. Loss of other pleasurable activities

If a person has three of above symptoms together at sometime during last year they have dependence.

Is Hangover alcohol withdrawal?

This alcohol withdrawal syndrome is not to be confused with hangover that occur after a episode of binge drinking. Hangovers are usually due to reduced blood sugar due to how body metabolises alcohol and due to alcohol metabolites accumulating in the body (Aldehyde).
 It is helped by taking milk with sugary drink.

Alcohol withdrawal is no to be confused with Hangover : Courtesy :

Why people develop severe alcohol withdrawal reaction?

Brain adapts to alcohol in dependent person. Once alcohol is withdrawn from his/her blood stream, those adaptable changes become unopposed. These changes can become so severe it can kill the person.

How Librium helps?

Librium is acting similar to alcohol. Once alcohol is not in the system Librium keep those adaptive changes in check. Then librium is gradually reduced. So body has enough time to readapt itself.

How Librium is given for alcohol withdrawal?

Librium is usually started in a high dose and then gradually the dose will be tailed off. Common doses to start with are (30mgs 6hrly, 20mg 6hrly). Then the dose is gradually reduced until the withdrawal features are disappeared.

Usually Librium is tailed off within five days. But a night dose is continued for sometime to help sleep disturbance associated with alcohol withdrawal.

It usually takes one to two weeks to completely detoxify alcohol dependent person. However, his/her craving for the alcohol will not subside with Librium. It needs careful psychotherapy and medications such as Acamprosate.

Problems associated with Librium?

Librium can cause drowsiness, sedation, cognitive impairment, and motor coordination difficulties. Due to this reason a Person who is on Librium should not operate machinery or drive vehicles. But they can do these tasks once he/she is off drugs for more than a week, so the drug is cleared from the body. 

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Uses and side effects of Manorest

Manorest is a trade name of the generic medication Alprazolam. It is manufactured in India and popular in Indian sub-continent. It is prescribed for Anxiety disorders and to help sleep problems. This medication is known to cause fatigue, drowsiness and dizziness. This medication should not be used in long term as it is habit forming and causes addiction.

Uses of Manorest

Manorest is prescribed primarily in anxiety disorders such as social phobia, simple phobia, agoraphobia and panic disorder. Addition to above use this medication can help to reduce seizures. But it is rarely used for this purpose.

This medication should not be used long term, by people with anxiety disorders, as they will need higher doses to control anxiety. In addition, they become more anxious when they are not on medication.

Sudden discontinuation of Manorest after prolonged use can cause severe withdrawal syndrome. It is similar to alcohol withdrawal reaction and should be treated by medical professionals.
Manorest 0.5mg tablets

What are the dose range of Manorest?

This medication is usually prescribed in the range 0.25mg to 1mg. It should be taken as a complete tablet with full glass of water. Never crush the tablet before taking as it will increase the side effects.

What are the common side effects of this medication?

Drowsiness is a commons side effect of Manorest
Most common side effects are sedation, dizziness and drowsiness. These side effects can go on to next day morning, when you takes the medication at night (It is prescribed at night). Therefore it is very important you should avoid operating machinery and driving vehicles, when you are on Manorest. However, after sometime you may find the side effects become tolerable.

Operating machinery can be dangerous if you took this medication at night

Driving Manorest
Driving can be dangerous if you are on Manorest

If this medication is taken to induce sleep, you may find the quality of sleep is less than the natural sleep. It is because this medication is known to disrupt natural sleep cycle.

Few people have reported that taking this medication can cause depression and suicide tendencies. In addition, some people will lose their social inhibition and can become irritable and aggressive. In addition, it can increase risk taking behavior in certain individuals.

Other common side effects are memory impairment, confusion, and fatigue. Confusion is more common among elderly people who take this medication.

List of commons side effects of Manorest

1.       Sedation
2.       Drowsiness
3.       Dizziness
4.       Loss of quality sleep
5.       Depression
6.       Disinhibition
7.       Aggression
8.       Memory impairment
9.       Confusion
10.    Fatigue

Clinical depression is a common side effect

Rare side effects of Manorest

1.       Sexual problems
2.       Allergic reactions
3.       Headache
4.       Walking difficulty
5.       Urine incontinence

Information you need to give to your doctor before getting your prescription

1.       Kidney disease
2.       Pregnancy status
3.       Breast feeding
4.       Liver disease
5.       Breathing problem such as Asthma
6.       Clinical depression
7.       Myasthenia gravis

Manorest is a prescription only benzodiazepine class medication, its generic name is Alprazolam. It is prescribed for Anxiety disorders and to induce sleep. Its main side effects are sedation, drowsiness, confusion and memory impairment.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Uses and side effects of Sizodon

Sizodon is a brand of Risperidone manufactured by the Sun Pharma, India. It is an atypical antipsychotic medication prescribed primarily for Schizophrenia, Delusional disorder and Bipolar disorder. Main notable side effects of Sizodon are movement problem called acute dystonia and drug induced Parkinsonism.

Uses of Sizodon

Sizodon is prescribed primarily for psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar mania and delusional disorder. In addition, it is prescribed for acute and transient psychotic disorders. It is available as tablets and usual dose range is 0.5mg to 16mg. But it is usually prescribed in the range 2mg – 8mg.

Sizodon 1mg tablets

Sizodon 2mg tablets

Schizophrenia is a psychiatry disorder characterized by delusions and hallucinations. Delusions are strongly held beliefs that are culturally unacceptable and not amenable to logical arguments. Hallucinations are perceptions (sounds, visions and sensations) without a stimulus (e.g hearing voices when nobody is talking). It is found scientifically, that patients with schizophrenia experience above symptoms due to abnormalities in their brain chemistry.

Artists Depiction of Schizophrenia

Bipolar disorder is a mood disorder where the patients experience extreme mood swings. They sometime become severely depressed with ideas of worthlessness, having inability to experience pleasure, and hopelessness. Some patients commit suicide when the depression overwhelms them. In addition, at other times they have normal mood and sometimes get very high elevation of mood. At the time of elevation of mood they can become destructive, over spend their money and have sexual misadventures.

Having both happy and sad moods in Bipolar disorder

Sizodon is especially effective in the mood elevated phase or the manic phase. In addition, it has some mood stabilizing properties. Therefore, some doctors prescribe it after their manic phase.
This medication is also prescribed in Delusional disorder. It is a disorder characterized by persisting delusions. Common example of Delusional disorder is morbid jealousy. Here the person suspects his/her sexual partner fidelity without any adequate evidence.

Side effects of Sizodon

Sizodon is an antipsychotic medication and it shares side effects of other anti psychotics. Most common side effects are nausea, gastric upset and drowsiness. They are common to most of western medications.

Most notable side effects are movement problems named acute dystonia and drug induced Parkinsonism. Acute dystonia occurs within hours of taking the medication and Parkinsonism occur within days of taking it. These side effects are common in higher doses of the medication (Usually more than 4mg).

It can cause restlessness in legs and the person gets a feeling that he need to continue to move. It is very distressing symptom and if you get this symptom, you need to meet your doctor.
These movement related side effects are described in the following post.

In addition, Sizodon is known to aggravate glaucoma, cause acute urine retention, cause constipation and male erectile dysfunction. It is also causes menstrual problems in women. Some people experience severe drowsiness and sedation.

Sexual dysfunction is a common cause for discontinuation of medication. It can be addressed by doctors. 

Some people would experience weight gain, increased blood sugar and increased blood lipid levels with this medication. It is called metabolic syndrome.

A list of common side effects

  1. Anxiety
  2. Changes in vision, including blurred vision
  3. Difficulty concentrating
  4. Difficulty speaking or swallowing
  5. Inability to move the eyes
  6. Loss of balance and control
  7. Mask like face
  8. Memory problems
  9. Muscle spasms of face, neck, and back
  10. Problems with urination
  11. Need to keep moving the legs
  12. Shuffling walk
  13. Skin rash or itching
  14. Stiffness or weakness of the arms or legs
  15. Tic-like or twitching movements
  16. Trembling & shaking of the fingers/hands
  17. Trouble sleeping
  18. Twisting like body movements

How to minimize side effects

You should take the dose recommended by your doctor. You should also take the medication with a full glass of water. Take the medication after a meal. In addition, never crush the medication before taking it. If you experience abnormal movements, inability to keep still (constantly in need of moving the legs) or drooling of saliva or severe constipation then you need to meet your doctor again.

Sometimes your doctor would prescribe medications that would alleviate or prevent you from getting side effects. Common such medication is Benzhexol (or Trihexyphenidyl).

What are the rare but dangerous side effects?

Most significant dangerous side effect would be neuroleptic malignant syndrome. It is characterized by fever, muscle rigidity, confusion and can cause multi organ failure. It is a serious complication of all the antipsychotic medications including Sizodon.

Symptoms of Neuroleptic malignant syndrome  


Sizodon is an antipsychotic medication called risperidone. It is prescribed for schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders. Main side effects are movement abnormalities called acute dystonic reaction and drug induced parkinsonism.

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