Improves mood and relieves certain kinds of pain. Elavil (Amitriptyline) is an older antidepressant that's sometimes used to treat pain and sleep problems, but it can have more side effects than similar medications. Prevents seizures and stabilizes mood. Lamictal (Lamotrigine) is most useful for treating severe seizure disorders, and for bipolar disorder with more depression symptoms than manic symptoms. Just be careful to increase your dose slowly to avoid skin rash. How it works Elavil (Amitriptyline) is a tricyclic antidepressant (TCA). Researchers don't know exactly how it works. It may change serotonin and norepinephrine activity in the brain, which regulates mood and pain perception. It also has sedative effects. Lamictal (Lamotrigine) is an antiepileptic. Researchers don't know exactly how it works, but it seems to calm nerve activity in the brain. Type of medication Antidepressant
› Tricyclic antidepressant (TCA)
Prescription only Anticonvulsant Prescription only Available as Pill Extended release Chewable tablet Dissolving tablet Used for (click to learn more) Find lowest prices Save on your next prescription. Be sure you’re getting the lowest price for your medication, even if you have insurance. How well it works for depression
The free Iodine Start program helps people track how well they are improving, and find the right antidepressant faster.
The free Iodine Start program (personal reports and coaching) is currently only for antidepressants. For now, you can read our pharmacist info about this medication. Learn more about Elavil (Amitriptyline) › The free Iodine Start program (personal reports and coaching) is currently only for antidepressants. For now, you can read our pharmacist info about this medication. Learn more about Lamictal (Lamotrigine) › Reviews & ratings Everyone Men Women Button Group. All currently active Everyone Men Women All ages 18-34 35-54 55+ Button Group. All currently active All ages 18-34 35-54 55+ 4.466101694915254 Elavil
Reviews for Elavil (Amitriptyline)
of people say Elavil (Amitriptyline) is worth it
say it works well
say it's a big hassle
Reviews for Lamictal (Lamotrigine)
vs. Elavil (Amitriptyline)
+24% vs. Elavil (Amitriptyline)
+4% vs. Elavil (Amitriptyline)
The Elavil FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
More about Elavil side effects » More Lamictal side effects » Risk factors for serious side effects › Age 24 years or younger › History of bipolar disorder › At risk for bipolar disorder › History of cardiovascular disease Detailed Elavil (Amitriptyline) risks & warnings » › People also taking Depakote › Taking more than the prescribed dose › Increasing the dose too quickly › Taking birth control pills › Stopping Lamictal (Lamotrigine) suddenly Detailed Lamictal (Lamotrigine) risks & warnings » Pregnancy category
Alcohol No specific alcohol-related info. No specific alcohol-related info.
Food No specific food-related info. › Take with food to avoid upset stomach.
Kidneys and liver No specific kidneys and liver-related info. No specific kidneys and liver-related info.
Sex No specific sex-related info. No specific sex-related info.
Sleep › Low doses of Elavil (Amitriptyline) start working in 45 minutes to help you sleep better. No specific sleep-related info.
Weight › It's more likely to cause sleepiness, nausea, constipation, diarrhea, and weight gain (1 to 5 pounds) than other antidepressants. › Can cause dizziness, drowsiness, constipation, and weight gain. No specific weight-related info. Upsides and benefits › Low doses work well to treat certain kinds of chronic pain. It can take 2 weeks to feel the full effects of the medication. › Low doses of Elavil (Amitriptyline) start working in 45 minutes to help you sleep better. › Six out of every ten people who use an antidepressant for the first time find that it works for them. › Effective at lowering the frequency of seizures in people with epilepsy or Lennox-Gestaut syndrome. Typically used together with other medications for severe seizure disorders. › Works best for partial, tonic-clonic, and absence seizures. › A first-line treatment for bipolar disorder. Effective long-term treatment for stabilizing mood. Prevents both depressive and manic episodes, but the effect is greater for preventing depression. › Doesn't require routine blood tests. Downsides and risks › When used for depression, Elavil (Amitriptyline) causes more side effects and has a higher risk of overdose than other antidepressants. It's usually used when other medications haven't worked. › It's more likely to cause sleepiness, nausea, constipation, diarrhea, and weight gain (1 to 5 pounds) than other antidepressants. › People age 65 and older have a higher risk for this medication's side effects. › Like most antidepressants, it can cause a higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior for people age 24 and younger. › The first antidepressant you try doesn't always work or it can cause side effects you really don't like. You might need to try a few different medications until you find one that works for you. › Can cause double vision, dizziness, sleepiness, and headache. › Has the risk of a rare but life-threatening rash. › Can make hormonal birth control less effective. › Might be less effective than other medicines for treating manic episodes (acute mania) in people with bipolar disorder. Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication › Take at bedtime to avoid some of its side effects. › Can cause dizziness, drowsiness, constipation, and weight gain. › Stop taking it slowly to avoid getting withdrawal symptoms. › Tell your doctor if you notice sudden mood changes or unusual thoughts. › Follow dose adjustments set by your doctor to minimize skin rash. › Take with food to avoid upset stomach. › Report rash, blurry vision, fever, persistent headache, or neck stiffness to your doctor. › Makes hormonal birth control less effective. › Takes 4 to 6 weeks to feel full effects on mood. Learn more More about Elavil Side effects Reviews & ratings Alternatives FDA package insert More about Lamictal Side effects Reviews & ratings Alternatives FDA package insert