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Effexor Linked to Increased Risk of Suicide

Effexor is manufactured by Wyeth Pharmaceuticals Inc., and was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on October 20th, 1997 as a treatment for depression. However, research shows that treatment with Effexor is associated with an increased risk of suicidal thoughts and actions in children and young adults.


  • The increased risk of suicidal thoughts or actions normally occurs within the first few months of treatment or when doses are changed.
  • The FDA encourages users and guardians to remain alert for the following signs in patients taking Effexor:
    • Acting on dangerous impulses
    • Acting aggressive or violent
    • Thoughts about suicide or dying
    • New or worse depression
    • Anxiety
    • Panic attacks
    • Trouble sleeping
    • Other unusual changes in behavior or mood
  • Users might also experience agitation, hallucinations, coordination problems or muscle twitching, changes in blood pressure, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.


In March of 2014, Pfizer Inc. issued a voluntary recall of one lot of 30-count Effexor XR 150 mg extended-release capsules, one lot of 90-count Effexor XR (venlafaxine HCl) 150 mg extended-release capsules, and one lot of 90-count Greenstone LLC-branded Venlafaxine HC1 150 mg extended-release capsules.

This action was taken after a pharmacist reported that a bottle of Pfizer’s Effexor XR contained a capsule of Tikosyn (dofetilide) 0.25mg in addition to the Effexor XR capsules.

Tikosyn drug interactions with Effexor have not been considered by the prescribing physicians and could cause serious adverse health consequences that could be fatal.


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