Compare amoxapine vs. Vivactil

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Asendin
(amoxapine)

Vivactil
(protriptyline)

Stabilizes your mood. While Asendin (amoxapine) can treat depression, you have to take it several times a day and it can make you feel sleepy.Improves your mood. Vivactil (protriptyline) is part of the first choice of medicines for depression, but it can cause problems with your heartbeat and change your sex drive.
Reviews & ratings
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Have you used Asendin (amoxapine)?
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Have you used Vivactil (protriptyline)?
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Side effects
amoxapineVivactil
  • Drowsiness or fatigue 14%
  • Dry mouth 14%
  • Constipation 12%
  • Vision changes 7%
More amoxapine side effects »

The Vivactil FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Vivactil side effects »
How it works
amoxapineVivactil
Asendin (amoxapine) is a tricyclic antidepressant. It increases the activity of serotonin and norepinephrine in your brain which regulate your mood.Vivactil (protriptyline) is a tricyclic antidepressant. It regulates mood by raising the amount of serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain.
Type of medication
amoxapineVivactil
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
amoxapineVivactil
  • Pill
  • Pill
Used for
amoxapineVivactil
Risk factors for serious side effects
amoxapineVivactil
  • People under age 24
  • Glaucoma
  • Taking antidepressants
  • Taking opioids for pain relief or medicines for anxiety
  • Over age 65
Detailed Asendin (amoxapine) risks & warnings »
  • Under age 24
  • History of heart disease
  • Overactive thyroid
  • History of seizures
  • High blood pressure
Detailed Vivactil (protriptyline) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

The FDA hasn’t classified this medicine’s effects on unborn babies. Talk with your doctor about this medicine if you’re pregnant or planning on it.

Food
amoxapineVivactil
  • Take Asendin (amoxapine) with food to avoid stomach upset.
No food related info.
Sleep
amoxapineVivactil
  • You can feel very tired or sleepy. Don't drive or do anything that requires concentration until you know how it affects you.
No sleep related info.
Upsides and benefits
amoxapineVivactil
  • Asendin (amoxapine) can be used to treat more severe forms of depression.
  • Compared to similar medicines, Asendin (amoxapine) improves the mood in depression more quickly.
  • Asendin (amoxapine) is available as generic.
  • Vivactil (protriptyline) is part of the first choice medicines for treating depression.
  • Compared to similar medicines, Vivactil (protriptyline) is less likely to make you feel sleepy.
  • Available in generic.
Downsides and risks
amoxapineVivactil
  • Asendin (amoxapine) is not a first choice medicine for depression because of side effects.
  • In some people, Asendin (amoxapine) can stop working as early as 2-3 months after you start taking it.
  • Not recommended in older people, children under 16, or people who've had a history of seizures.
  • Vivactil (protriptyline) can lower your sex drive more than some other similar medicines.
  • Because Vivactil (protriptyline) can cause dizziness, people age 65 and older need to take precautions when taking Vivactil (protriptyline).
  • Vivactil (protriptyline) can worsen heart conditions. If you have a history of heart problems, you may need to have regular testing for your heart.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
amoxapineVivactil
  • You can feel very tired or sleepy. Don't drive or do anything that requires concentration until you know how it affects you.
  • You might not notice any changes in your mood for at least a few weeks.
  • Take Asendin (amoxapine) with food to avoid stomach upset.
  • You're more likely to be dehydrated and constipated. Drink plenty of fluids and be careful not to get overheated if you're out in the sun.
  • Don't stop taking Asendin (amoxapine) without talking to your doctor. Stopping Asendin (amoxapine) suddenly can be very dangerous.
  • Take Vivactil (protriptyline) at night since it can make you sleepy. Don't drive or do anything that requires concentration until you know how your body reacts to it.
  • You might have to take Vivactil (protriptyline) for a few weeks before you notice any changes in your mood.
  • Vivactil (protriptyline) can make you more sensitive to the sun. Wear sunscreen or cover your skin if you're going to be out in the sun for a while.
  • Don't stop taking Vivactil (protriptyline) without talking to your doctor first.
  • Be very careful getting up if you've been sitting or lying down for a while since Vivactil (protriptyline) can make you feel dizzy.
Learn more
More about amoxapineSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Asendin (amoxapine)?
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More about VivactilSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Vivactil (protriptyline)?
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