Desipramine for anxiety & depression.

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Is desipramine (nopramin) right for you?

There are many different types of medications for depression, and it’s important to find the one that’s right for you. At Brightside, we’re here to help. Our providers are knowledgeable about each type of medication for depression and specialize in finding the best fit for your individual needs. As part of your treatment, your provider may recommend an antidepressant called desipramine to help you feel better.

Desipramine is a commonly used medication for symptoms of depression. Below, we offer some helpful information about desipramine so you can make an informed decision about your care and work with your provider to determine if it’s right for you.

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Mimi Winsberg, MD

Chief Medical Officer
Stanford-trained Psychiatrist with 25 years of practice

Get a desipramine prescription and ongoing anxiety & depression care for only $95 / month.

What’s included in a Brightside Medication Membership:

  • Ongoing support from an expert psychiatric provider
  • Unlimited daily messaging & video follow-ups
  • Free monthly medication delivery
  • Regular progress tracking

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Getting started is simple.

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Step 1

Fill out our free mental health assessment.

Start with a clinically-proven set of questions to shed light on how you’re feeling. We’ll help you understand your symptoms, then recommend the best treatment plan for you–including medication, therapy, or both.

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Step 2

Connect with your provider for a personalized treatment plan.

Get matched with an expert provider for an online video consultation. Share how you’re feeling and then decide on next steps–together.

If prescribed, your medication will be delivered to your door monthly.

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Step 3

Make progress and start feeling better.

Stay in touch with with unlimited messaging, plus monthly video sessions with your Therapist and unlimited video consults with your Psychiatric Provider.

Then measure your progress with regular check-ins to monitor your symptoms and make adjustments until your treatment is right for you.

Everything you need to know about desipramine

What is desipramine, and how does it work?

Desipramine, commonly sold under the brand name Nopramin, belongs to a class of drugs called tricyclic antidepressants. It’s a prescription drug that may improve your mood, sleep, and energy level. Experts don’t know exactly how it works to treat depression. One theory is that it may keep your brain from reabsorbing a chemical called norepinephrine. A raised level of norepinephrine in your body helps to improve your mood and restore your interest in daily living.

Tricyclic antidepressants are an older class of drugs and aren’t used as much for initial treatment. They have more side effects than drugs such as SNRIs (serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors). They are sometimes used when other medications haven’t worked.

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What conditions does desipramine treat?

At Brightside, our psychiatric providers specialize in personalizing treatment for each person. We give you personal attention and expert advice you can count on—we explain all your options and use our expertise to find the medication that’s right for you. We make sure you understand how medications work and what to expect so that your treatment is worry-free.”

Desipramine can be taken alone or in combination with other medications to treat depression.

Other uses for desipramine include the treatment of bulimia nervosa, irritable bowel syndrome, neuropathic pain, overactive bladder, post-herpetic neuralgia, and ADHD.

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What symptoms can desipramine help treat?

Desipramine offers a wide range of benefits that vary by person. The benefits you may experience depend on several factors, including your diagnosis and the severity of your symptoms.

When you use desipramine, sometimes with other medications, it can help relieve your symptoms of depression.

Desipramine can also help you with:

  • Better sleep
  • Elevating your mood
  • Increasing your appetite
  • Increasing your energy level
  • Relieving feeling of hopelessness, sadness, and worthlessness

Brightside providers have an in-depth knowledge of the strengths and drawbacks of each medication. You’ll get all the information you need to make an informed choice about your treatment.

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Will desipramine work for me?

We understand that you may be feeling a bit uncertain about starting a new medication and whether it will help you feel better. You’re not alone—many patients have similar questions, and we’ll work together with you to find the answers.

It’s important to keep in mind that some medications work better for certain people than others because each person is different. Many different factors influence how you respond to medication, including your age, gender, and genetic background. Underlying health conditions, other medications you take, and dietary considerations can also play a role in how you react to a new medication.

With desipramine, you will start to notice positive changes within a few days. Just keep in mind that it may take two to three weeks before you experience the full benefits of the medication.

Before starting a new medication like desipramine, it’s important to get a comprehensive health assessment from a provider who understands your health history. You should only take desipramine if a physician or other qualified psychiatric provider prescribed it for you.

We understand that mental health concerns often can’t wait, so if you need to meet with a provider right away to discuss a new or existing medication, we offer telehealth services and provider consultations that can be scheduled within 48 hours.

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How long do people generally take desipramine?

The amount of time you need to take desipramine will depend on your diagnosis and specific symptoms. It generally takes two to three weeks to reach maximum effectiveness. Your provider may prescribe this medication if you are experiencing a major depressive episode and may recommend that you stay on it to maintain a stable mood.

Your Brightside provider will work with you to determine what course of treatment is best for your specific needs. Most importantly, we recommend that you keep taking your medication until your provider suggests it’s an appropriate time to stop.

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How effective is desipramine?

Studies have shown that antidepressants relieve symptoms of depression about 40-60% of the time, and additional treatments (such as therapy and lifestyle improvements) on top of medication often lead to the best outcomes.

To get the best results with medication, it’s important to consistently measure progress during treatment. This is known as Measurement-Based Care, and it’s the approach we use at Brightside. It’s common to adjust the dose and/or medication when starting antidepressants until you find just the right fit.

Studies show that desipramine is a safe and effective medication. However, it’s important to know that its effectiveness varies from person to person. And if you are taking desipramine, you should avoid drinking alcohol when you are on desipramine because it will decrease the amount and effectiveness of the medication in your body.

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Does desipramine change my personality?

We understand that you may have some concerns about how desipramine affects you, but you don’t have to worry about it changing your personality. The goal of this treatment is to help you feel better—like yourself again—and restore your good mental health. But remember, it doesn’t happen overnight. Keep taking your medication as prescribed, and talk to your provider if you have any questions or concerns.

Are there side effects associated with desipramine?

Desipramine is generally a safe medication, but it’s important to talk with your Brightside provider about potential side effects of this treatment. Most of these effects are mild and go away as you get used to your medication.

Do not drive a car or operate machinery until you know how this medication affects you. Some common side effects include:

  • Blurry vision
  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Dry mouth
  • Fast heart rate
  • High blood pressure, or low blood pressure when standing after sitting or lying down
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Sexual problems, such as decreased sexual desire or impotence
  • Trouble urinating
  • Vomiting

Desipramine can also make your skin more sensitive to the sun. While taking this medication, avoid sun exposure or wear protective clothing or sunscreen if you are in the sun.

Although it’s uncommon, you may experience serious side effects with desipramine. These include: 

  • Eye problems, including pain, blurry vision, swelling, or redness
  • Heart attack symptoms, including chest pain and shortness of breath
  • Irregular heart rhythm or pounding heart
  • Reaction to the drug, with agitation, tremors, and other symptoms
  • Seizures
  • Stroke
  • Thoughts of suicide or self-harm

With any serious side effects, contact your physician immediately, or call 911 if you feel your symptoms are life-threatening. 

Do not take desipramine with monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), linezolid, or methylene blue. These drug combinations can increase your risk for serious side effects. 

At Brightside, your health and safety are our highest priorities. We make sure you get individual attention and guidance to make sure you feel your best.

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Does desipramine have withdrawal symptoms?

Desipramine does have withdrawal symptoms when you suddenly stop taking it. These can include nausea, headache, and weakness. So, it’s important to take it exactly as your provider directs. Having a consistent amount of the drug in your body at all times will give you the most significant benefit from the drug.

If you would like to stop taking desipramine, make sure to talk to your provider or Brightside provider first.

Can I take desipramine during pregnancy or while nursing?

It is not yet known if desipramine is safe and effective in women who are pregnant. If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, make sure to talk to your provider before making any changes to your medication. At Brightside, we can discuss the pros and cons of continuing or starting a medication while pregnant.

We also do not have clear evidence that desipramine is safe to use during breastfeeding. Talk to your provider so you can develop a plan together to manage your symptoms and feed your baby safely.

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Is desipramine addictive?

Desipramine is not a controlled substance, and it is not addictive. If you have concerns about your dependence on this medication, don’t hesitate to talk to your Brightside provider.

What does the FDA say about desipramine?

You can view the FDA black box warning for desipramine here. If you have questions about whether the black box warning for desipramine applies to you, please talk to your provider.

Conditions we treat with desipramine

Brightside Psychiatric Providers prescribe desipramine alongside other medicines to treat conditions including:
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