UPDATED 05/18/2016

Tricyclic Antidepressants Review
Tricyclic Antidepressants Review

PUBLISHED: 05/18/2012 by BR Publishing
Editor's Review: 2.1/5.0
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Tricyclic Antidepressants

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Tricyclic antidepressants is a category of antidepressants, one of the first ever developed. Even though new antidepressants with fewer side-effects have been developed since, sometimes they fail to be effective where tricyclic ones work.

Tricyclic antidepressants were developed in the 1950’s and have been used in the clinical treatment of mood disorders (major depressive disorder, dysthymia and bipolar disorder ). Other medical disorders treated with tricyclic antidepressants are various anxiety disorders (such asocial anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder), post-traumatic stress disorder, body dismorphic disorder, eating disorders (anorexia and bulimia), personality disorders (like ADHD), headache, migraine, smoking cessation, Tourette Syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, interstitial cystitis and nocturnal enuresis.

Some of them have also been approved by the FDA.

Tricyclic Antidepressants Ingredients

Not applicable.

Product Features

Tricyclic antidepressants or cyclic antidepressants act by affecting neurotransmitters, changing the level of one or more of these chemical transmitters at brain level. The neurotransmitters affected by tricyclic antidepressants are serotonin and norepinephrine. The antidepressants work by blocking their absorption, thus making them available to the brain.

Some of their most common side-effects are: drowsiness, dizziness, disorientation and confusion, blurred vision, increased appetite, weight gain, fatigue, headache, nausea, increased heart rate and sensitivity to sunlight.
Tricyclic antidepressants have been used for years as the best choice for pharmacological treatment of clinical depression. Today they are being replaced by antidepressants with improved safety and fewer side-effects, but are still used occasionally for treatment-resistant depression.

An important reason for the replacement of their use is that newer products are thought to be less dangerous in a suicide attempt.

The side effects usually trigger before the therapeutic benefits can be noticed and for this reason they may be potentially dangerous, as patients are prone to committing suicide during treatment.

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  • Some cyclic antidepressants are FDA approved
  • Highly effective in some treatment-resistant forms of depression.


  • Numerous Tricyclic Antidepressants side effects
  • They also affect other neurotransmitters besides the targeted one (resulting in undetermined negative consequences).


Tricyclic antidepressants are the first large scale antipsychotic drugs used. They are not considered addictive and are, according to some specialists, preferable to the monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs).

Most of the cyclic neurotransmitters act as inhibitors of reuptake of serotonin and norepinephrine, enhancing the transmission of information between brain cells. By increasing the levels available to the brain, it is believed that antidepressants have a mood booster effect.

They have been and are still used are on a smaller scale in the treatment of clinical depression, ADHD (now they are usually replaced by more effective agents with fewer side effects) and chronic pain.

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Tricyclic Antidepressants ReviewBR Publishing22016-05-18 12:09:31
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