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Antidepressants with the Least Side Effects

author image Chad Stone
Chad Stone is a medical scientist based in the Pacific Northwest. Since 2003, Dr. Stone has has published high-profile articles on the molecular mechanisms of cardiovascular disease and cancer in journals such as Blood and the Journal of the American Heart Association. Dr. Stone is a specialist in blood biology as well as cancers of breast, colon, kidney and other tissues.
Antidepressants with the Least Side Effects
Certain antidepressants such as Wellbutrin have a low incidence of sexual side effects.

A variety of prescription antidepressant drugs are available to treat depression and anxiety disorders. While these drugs are highly effective in treating depression, they are often associated with side effects such as headaches, weight gain and sexual dysfunction. No antidepressant drug is free of side effects or potential dangers. Certain antidepressants, however, have lower incidences of specific side effects. These drugs may benefit individuals undergoing treatment for depression that wish to avoid side effects of certain antidepressant medications.

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Remeron, an antidepressant medication known generically as mirtazapine, does have a number of mild side effects typical of antidepressants. Interestingly, however, there are few sexual side effects associated with Remeron which are common to other antidepressants. Remeron also has limited effects on REM sleep. According to, Remeron does have weight gain side effects that effect up to 12 percent on Remeron users. Other side effects common to antidepressants such as headaches, dizziness, drowsiness, loss of appetite and confusion are also reported by Remeron users.


Wellbutrin, known generically as bupropion, is one of the most commonly prescribed antidepressants in the United States. Wellbutrin has a unique mechanism of action compared to other popular antidepressants, acting as a dopamine reuptake inhibitor. Welbutrin is also commonly used as a smoking cessation aid. Wellbutrin can also be used in combination with other antidepressant drugs to increase their efficacy. Wellbutrin is associated with some side effects typical of antidepressants such as headaches and drowsiness. explains that Wellbutrin, however, does not have sexual side effects common to other drugs such as Prozac and Paxil. Furthermore, there are minimal weight gain side effects of Wellbutrin such as those seen with Paxil. Individuals seeking treatment for depression that wish to avoid sexual and weight gain side effects of antidepressant drugs may consider asking a physician about the advantages of Wellburtin.


Celexa, or citalopram, is selective serotonin reuptake transporter inhibitor, or SSRI, that functions similarly to Prozac. lists a number of side effects of Celexa typical of many SSRI drugs. Celexa, however, is reported as having fewer overall side effects than other SSRIs according to Individuals seeking treatment for depression who are concerned with hair loss may consider talking to their health care provider about Celexa, as Celexa may have limited hair loss side effects, though some hair loss is still possible with Celexa use.

Effexor XR

Effexor XR is a unique antidepressant drug used to treat depression and generalized anxiety disorder. Unlike SSRI antidepressants, Effexor XR changes brain levels of the neurotransmitters serotonin and norepinephrine. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, Effexor XR is less likely to induce seizures or have toxic effects on the heart. While side effects of Effexor such as headache, loss of appetite and sexual dysfunction are reported, they may be not as severe as other commonly used antidepressants.

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