I would love to hear from people who’ve tried venlafaxine ER (Effexor extended release). I guess this is a generic form because it says “venlafaxine ER” on the bottle, not Effexor.
What dose did you start with, and how high did you go? (The extended-release version–if the dose is different from the regular version.) Do you take it in the morning or evening?
I am planning to stop my Strattera (a little scary to stop after 9 years!) and start the venlafaxine tomorrow or the next day.
I am confused about the dose; my PCP just sent in the Rx and did not mention dosage and titrating up until I asked, but he seemed uncertain and seems to be leaving it mostly up to me. I did not know he was going to prescribe the extended-release version, and I wonder if that’s different dosing? I picked up the Rx a couple of days ago–it is 37.5 mg and the instructions on the bottle just say “take one in the evening.” Yet in my list of meds in my online clinic chart, it says take TWO in the evening. I hate it when things are inconsistent like that and not explained. And why would you take it in the evening instead of the morning??
I had been HOPING to try Savella instead (also an SNRI but one that has a stronger effect on norepinephrine, which I thought would be less of a change from the Strattera) but the doctor had never heard of it and therefore would not prescribe what he called a “new” drug (though it’s four years old). I do think I have a mild case of fibromyalgia and that’s another reason I thought Savella might be a better choice, since that is what it’s FDA-approved for.
I had thought the doctor (my PCP) wouldn’t care which drug I asked for, because he had apparently known nothing about VM and prophylactic drugs for it, and it was ME who brought up Effexor a few months ago. I guess he found out in the meantime that VM was a legitimate thing and that indeed Effexor was used for this purpose, and he was now ready to prescribe it.
He said he didn’t think I should “try to be my own doctor,” but when your doctors either can’t or won’t figure things out, you have to think for yourself! So I found that remark rather insulting. He’d given me no suggestions or ideas or diagnosis for the dizziness, so I had to figure out something on my own. I would WELCOME informed and thoughtful guidance from doctors, but it’s just not happening.
Anyway, venlafaxine it is. I am nervous going off Strattera which has worked so well for my concentration, but hopeful the venlafaxine might dampen what seems to me my continuing low-level migraine activity and prevent more of those white spots on my brain.
And I only have to pay $5 for it (because it’s generic, I guess), versus $123 for the Strattera. (Which doesn’t make total sense, because I was very surprised to see that the retail price for the venlafaxine, 30 capsules, is $121—I had had the idea it was a cheap drug!)
Would love to hear any advice. Also, curious how much it has cost people. Is it really $121 for 30 pills of 37.5 mg each!?