Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Vivactil (protriptyline hydrochloride) is a tricyclic antidepressant used to treat symptoms of depression. Vivactil is available in generic form. Common side effects of Vivactil include nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, loss of appetite, constipation, diarrhea, dry mouth, unpleasant taste, weakness, lack of coordination, tingly feeling, anxiety, restlessness, dizziness, drowsiness, fatigue, insomnia, nightmares, blurred vision, headache, ringing in ears, breast swelling (in men or women), decreased sex drive, impotence, or difficulty having an orgasm. Tell your doctor if you have worsening depression or thoughts of suicide while taking Vivactil.
The usual adult dosage of Vivactil is 15 to 40 mg a day divided into 3 or 4 doses. If necessary, dosage may be increased to 60 mg a day. Vivactil may interact with cimetidine, guanethidine, tramadol, heart rhythm medications, or anti-psychotic medications. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use. During pregnancy, Vivactil should be used only if prescribed. It may harm a fetus. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. It is unknown if this drug passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.
Our Vivactil (protriptyline hydrochloride) Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Report any new or worsening symptoms to your doctor, such as: mood or behavior changes, anxiety, panic attacks, trouble sleeping, or if you feel impulsive, irritable, agitated, hostile, aggressive, restless, hyperactive (mentally or physically), more depressed, or have thoughts about suicide or hurting yourself.
Call your doctor at once if you have:
- a feeling that you might pass out;
- new or worsening chest pain, pounding heartbeats or fluttering in your chest;
- sudden numbness or weakness, problems with vision, speech, or balance;
- easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, or rectum), purple or red pinpoint spots under your skin;
- confusion, hallucinations, unusual thoughts or behavior;
- restless muscle movements in your eyes, tongue, jaw, or neck;
- painful or difficult urination;
- seizure (convulsions); or
- jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).
Common side effects may include:
- tingly feeling, weakness, lack of coordination;
- nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, constipation, diarrhea;
- dry mouth, blurred vision, ringing in your ears;
- breast swelling (in men or women); or
- decreased sex drive, impotence, or difficulty having an orgasm.
Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Vivactil (Protriptyline Hydrochloride Tablet)
Within each category the following adverse reactions are listed in order of decreasing severity. Included in the listing are a few adverse reactions which have not been reported with this specific drug. However, the pharmacological similarities among the tricyclic antidepressant drugs require that each of the reactions be considered when protriptyline is administered. Protriptyline is more likely to aggravate agitation and anxiety and produce cardiovascular reactions such as tachycardia and hypotension.
Seizures; incoordination; ataxia; tremors; peripheral neuropathy; numbness, tingling, and paresthesias of extremities; extrapyramidal symptoms; drowsiness; dizziness; weakness and fatigue; headache; syndrome of inappropriate ADH (antidiuretic hormone) secretion; tinnitus; alteration in EEG patterns.
Paralytic ileus; hyperpyrexia; urinary retention, delayed micturition, dilatation of the urinary tract; constipation; blurred vision, disturbance of accommodation, increased intraocular pressure, mydriasis; dry mouth and rarely associated sublingual adenitis.
Nausea and vomiting; anorexia; epigastric distress; diarrhea; peculiar taste; stomatitis; abdominal cramps; black tongue.
Though not indicative of addiction, abrupt cessation of treatment after prolonged therapy may produce nausea, headache, and malaise.
Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Vivactil (Protriptyline Hydrochloride Tablet)