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Common Side Effects of Pristiq

author image Carole Anne Tomlinson
Carole Anne Tomlinson is a registered nurse with experience in rehabilitation, nutrition, chemical dependency, diabetes and health problems related to the elderly. Tomlinson holds a Bachelor of Arts in criminal justice and is presently working on her master's degree in nursing. Her screenplays have been viewed by Merchant Ivory, Angela Lansbury and Steven King's associates.
Common Side Effects of Pristiq
A couple lay in bed, the woman visibly underwhelmed. Photo Credit: George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images

One of the newer forms of medication designed to treat mental depression, the brand-name drug Pristiq is classified as an SSNRI, or selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor. Pristiq, generically named desvenlafaxine, works to raise the activity level of the neurotransmitters norepinephrine and serotonin, the Mayo Clinic reports. Some side effects have been associated with Pristiq use.

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Appetite Loss

When a person starts using Pristiq, the Mayo Clinic reports, the medication may cause some temporary non-serious side effects that most often cease without help from a doctor. Among these types of side effects, lists nausea and vomiting, which may lead to loss of appetite. Most prescription drugs cause these kinds of side effects as the user’s body becomes acclimated to the medication. The side effects require medical intervention only if they appear severe or do not end on their own.

Diarrhea and Constipation

The adjustment period for Pristiq also may cause temporary bowel problems. The medication may produce either diarrhea or constipation. Neither problem usually requires medical attention, the Mayo Clinic reports, but recommends consulting a doctor for severe diarrhea or constipation, or if the problems continue.

Sexual Problems

Antidepressants, Pristiq among them, often cause sexual difficulties. Fortunately, this is a temporary and non-serious side effect, according to Pristiq may cause a reduction in the normal desire for sexual activities, including sexual intercourse. It also may decrease sexual ability, and prevent the user from achieving orgasm. Pristiq also may cause erection problems in men. Men may not get erections with Pristiq use at first, or they may not maintain erections. They also may take longer to ejaculate, the Mayo Clinic reports.

Drowsiness and Fatigue

Pristiq can induce a feeling of tiredness or drowsiness during the first part of treatment with the medicine. This can feel pervasive, as if the body has become fatigued due to hard work or physical activity. These problems, too, generally cease as the person taking Pristiq becomes accustomed to the medication.

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