Compare Effexor vs. Pristiq

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

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Effexor (venlafaxine)

Prescription only

Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)

Prescription only
Improves mood and helps you relax.

Effexor (venlafaxine) is good for treating depression and anxiety, but it can cause more withdrawal symptoms if you stop suddenly compared to other antidepressants.

3.7/ 5 average rating with 577 reviewsforEffexor
Improves mood.

Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) is an effective medicine for treating depression, but it is more expensive than many other medicines that work just like it.

3.5/ 5 average rating with 196 reviewsforPristiq
Upsides
  • Effexor (venlafaxine) effectively treats depression, anxiety, and panic disorder.
  • Effexor (venlafaxine) causes more sleepiness than other antidepressants, so it's beneficial for people who have trouble sleeping.
  • Effexor (venlafaxine) might work when other antidepressants haven't worked since it affects two chemicals in the brain that impact your mood.
  • Effexor (venlafaxine) has several uses, which may be good for people with multiple conditions.
  • Effexor (venlafaxine) is available in generic, which is cheaper.
  • You only need to take Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) once a day.
  • May be taken with or without food.
  • Less sedating than other anti-depressants.
Downsides
  • Effexor (venlafaxine) can cause side effects such as decreased libido and increased blood pressure.
  • Like most antidepressants, it can cause a higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior for people aged 24 years or younger.
  • Compared to other antidepressants, it's more likely to cause unpleasant withdrawal symptoms if you suddenly stop taking it and can causes more sleepiness.
  • Like most anti-depressants, full effect on mood takes up to 12 weeks.
  • Can increase the risk of suicidal thoughts and/or behavior in yound adults 24 years and younger.
  • Can affect your sex drive and ability to get an erection.
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Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Extended-release pill
Price
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Reviews
577 reviews so far
62%
saidit'sworth it
51%
saiditworked well
23%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Effexor (venlafaxine)?

Leave a review
196 reviews so far
53%
saidit'sworth it
49%
saiditworked well
23%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)?

Leave a review
Side effects
39possible side effects
  • Nausea
    37%
  • Headache
    25%
  • Drowsiness
    23%
  • Dry mouth
    22%
  • Dizziness
    19%
  • Difficulty sleeping
    18%
  • Constipation
    15%
  • Nervousness
    13%
  • Weakness
    12%
  • Sweating
    12%
  • Abnormal ejaculation/orgasm
    12%
  • Loss of appetite
    11%
  • Diarrhea
    8%
  • Infection
    6%
  • Vomiting
    6%
  • Anxiety
    6%
  • Blurred vision
    6%
  • Impotence
    6%
  • Indigestion
    5%
  • Tremor
    5%
  • Abnormal dreams
    4%
  • Chills
    3%
  • Rash
    3%
  • Gas
    3%
  • Stiff muscles
    3%
  • Prickling/burning sensation
    3%
  • Yawn
    3%
  • Increased urination
    3%
  • Chest pain
    2%
  • Trauma
    2%
  • Increased blood pressure
    2%
  • Increased heart rate
    2%
  • Decreased libido
    2%
  • Agitation
    2%
  • Confusion
    2%
  • Thinking abnormal
    2%
  • Changes in taste
    2%
  • Ringing in the ears
    2%
  • Dilation of pupils
    2%
See more detailed side effects
17possible side effects
  • Nausea
    22%
  • Dizziness
    13%
  • Dry mouth
    11%
  • Excessive sweating
    10%
  • Constipation
    9%
  • Inability to sleep
    9%
  • Tiredness
    7%
  • Decreased appetite
    5%
  • Drowsiness
    4%
  • Vomiting
    3%
  • Anxiety
    3%
  • Blurry vision
    3%
  • Tremor
    2%
  • Abnormal dreams
    2%
  • Dilated pupils
    2%
  • Vertigo
    2%
  • Ringing in ears
    2%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
    • Age 24 years or younger
  • Serotonin syndrome
    • Taking tricyclic antidepressants, lithium, tramadol, fentanyl, amphetamines, certain headache medications (triptans), St. John's Wort
  • Withdrawal
    • Stopping Effexor (venlafaxine) suddenly
  • Increased bleeding
    • Taking other blood-thinning drugs (including aspirin, NSAIDs such as Advil, warfarin)
  • Increased blood pressure
    • Bipolar disorder
      • History of bipolar disorder
      • At risk for bipolar disorder
    See more detailed risks and warnings
    • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
      • Age 24 or younger
    • Serotonin syndrome
      • Taking other medicines that also increase serotonin activity: Antidepressants (SSRIs, SNRIs, TCAs)
      • lithium
      • tramadol
      • Imitrex
      • Remeron
      • Lexapro
      • Dilaudid
    • Increased blood pressure
      • People with a history of high blood pressure or other heart conditions
    • Increased bleeding risk
      • Taking NSAIDS, blood thinners, or aspirin
    • Low sodium levels in blood
      • Older people
      • Taking diuretics
    • Stopping Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) too quickly
      • Taking the medicine for a long time
      • Stopping Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) too quickly
    See more detailed risks and warnings