Compare amoxapine vs. Vivactil

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


Asendin (amoxapine)

Prescription only

Vivactil (protriptyline)

Prescription only
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.

  • 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.
  • 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.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Pill
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Side effects
4possible side effects
  • Drowsiness or fatigue
  • Dry mouth
  • Constipation
  • Vision changes
See more detailed side effects
The Vivactil (protriptyline) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and risk factors
  • Increased risk of suicide
    • People under age 24
  • Vision changes
    • Glaucoma
  • Difficulty controlling movements
  • Neuroleptic malignant syndrome
    • Taking antidepressants
  • Slowed breathing
    • Taking opioids for pain relief or medicines for anxiety
  • Anticholinergic effects/Dehydration
    • Over age 65
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Higher risk of suicide
    • Under age 24
  • Possible bipolar disorder
  • Heart problems
    • History of heart disease
    • Overactive thyroid
  • Higher risk of seizures
    • History of seizures
  • Changes in blood pressure
    • High blood pressure
See more detailed risks and warnings