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Pristiq is primarily prescribed to treat major depressive disorder (MDD).

Last Modified: 08 May 2024

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What is Pristiq? 

Pristiq, known chemically as desvenlafaxine, is an antidepressant belonging to the class of selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs). It is formulated using desvenlafaxine succinate as an active ingredient. 

Pristiq is synthesized through a process that involves the selective hydrogenation and subsequent chemical modification of the parent compound, venlafaxine (which is also an anti-depressant drug). This process results in a compound with a distinct pharmacological profile. 

Global Name

Generic name: Desvenlafaxine
Brand names: Pristiq


What is Pristiq used for? 

Pristiq is primarily prescribed to treat major depressive disorder (MDD). It helps alleviate symptoms such as sadness, loss of interest in activities, and changes in appetite. The diseases and conditions it treats include: 

  • Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) 
  • Associated symptoms of depression 

How do you use Pristiq? 


Pristiq is available in the form of extended-release tablets. 

Dosage information: 

  • Adults: Typically, the recommended dose is 50 mg once daily, with or without food. 
  • Elderlies: Dose adjustment may be required based on renal and hepatic function. 
  • Children: Not recommended for use in children. 


  • Children: Not recommended. 
  • Adults: Suitable, following prescribed dosage. 
  • Elderlies: Dose adjustments may be necessary especially in patients with impaired renal function and individuals on multiple medications. 
  • Pregnancy: Should be used only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk. 
  • Lactation: Caution is advised; consult a healthcare provider. 
  • Allergies: Individuals with a known allergy to desvenlafaxine, venlafaxine, or any components of Pristiq should avoid it. 

Any warnings and precautions : 

Pristiq should be taken with caution by individuals with pre-existing hypertension, cardiovascular conditions, impaired renal function or those prone to bleeding.

Pristiq should not be taken in conjunction with monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) or within 14 days of stopping an MAOI.

Caution is required when taken with other serotonergic drugs, anticoagulants, or NSAIDs. 

Side Effects

Common side effects include nausea, abdominal pain, dizziness, sweating, constipation, and decreased appetite. Severe side effects may include increased blood pressure or signs of serotonin syndrome. 

Pharmacist Tips

  • Storage information: Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. 
  • Handling instructions: Handle with clean hands and do not crush or chew the extended-release tablets. 



Where is Pristiq available in Hong Kong?

Pristiq is a prescription medication that can be prescribed by healthcare providers. 


Can Pristiq be taken with food?

Yes, Pristiq can be taken with or without food.

What should I do if I miss a dose of Pristiq?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

Can Pristiq cause weight gain?

 Weight gain can occur with Pristiq, but it is not common.

Can I stop taking Pristiq abruptly?

No, you should not stop taking Pristiq without consulting your healthcare provider, as you may experience withdrawal symptoms. 

This website provides content related to drug use and medicine for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Do not use the information on this website to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting a qualified healthcare provider. The website's owners and contributors are not liable for any repercussions, adverse effects, or consequences resulting from the use of any medication or information provided herein.

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