Compare doxepin vs. Pamelor

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

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doxepin

Prescription only

Pamelor (nortriptyline)

Prescription only
Treats depression and anxiety.

doxepin can treat depression and anxiety, but it's not a first choice medication because of its many side effects.

Improves mood.

Pamelor (nortriptyline) is a good option for treating depression, especially for people who also have problems with persistent nerve pain, but may take 6 to 8 weeks to feel the full effects on your mood.

4.0/ 5 average rating with 19 reviewsforPamelor
Upsides
  • doxepin has been consistently shown to improve symptoms of depression and anxiety.
  • doxepin has been used to treat depression for over forty years.
  • Helpful with treating certain types of pain, like migraines or nerve-related pain.
  • Generally well tolerated and has fewer side effects than other medicines in the same class of drugs.
  • Available as a generic in 2 different forms: capsule and liquid.
Downsides
  • doxepin can make you very sleepy. Try taking it at bedtime if you need to be alert during the day.
  • You shouldn't drink alcohol with doxepin. It can worsen side effects like drowsiness.
  • You have to take it daily, especially if you are feeling better, for the medicine to do its job.
  • It can have more side effects than other antidepressants, like weight gain and increased appetite, decreased libido, and sleepiness.
  • It's not unusual for people to try different antidepressants until they find one that works for them.
  • Side effects are usually manageable, but can be annoying.
  • There's an increased chance of it causing heart problems, especially in people with a history of heart problems.
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Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Liquid
  • Pill
  • Liquid
Price
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Reviews
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19 reviews so far
79%
saidit'sworth it
79%
saiditworked well
21%
saidit'sa big hassle

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Side effects
The doxepin FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
The Pamelor (nortriptyline) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and risk factors
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
    • Age 24 years or under
  • Unmasking of bipolar disorder
    • Bipolar disorder
  • Serotonin syndrome
    • Taking MAOIs (monoamine oxidase inhibitors)
  • Heart problems
    • History of heart disease
    • Adults over 65
    • Electrolyte imbalance
  • Sleepiness
    • Adults 65 years or older
    • Taking other medicines that cause drowsiness (antihistamines, sleep medications, narcotic pain medications)
    • Alcohol
  • Dizziness and falls
    • Age 65 years or older
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
    • Age 24 years or younger
    • Changing the dose
  • Dizziness and falls
    • Age 65 years or older
    • Other blood pressure lowering medications
  • Eye problems
    • Glaucoma
  • Rare, life-threatening
    • Antidepressants
    • Lithium
    • Triptans
    • St. John's wort
    • Fentanyl
    • Tramadol
    • MAO inhibitors
  • Heart problems
    • History of heart disease
    • Older age
    • Electrolyte imbalance
See more detailed risks and warnings