COMMON BRANDS: Oleptro, Desyrel, Desyrel Dividose, Trazodone-D

Trazodone is an oral prescription medication used to treat depression, anxiety and panic attacks. It relates to a class of drugs called antidepressants (serotonin modulators), that works by increasing levels of neurotransmitters (serotonin) in the brain. Trazodone is available as a generic drug, which usually cost less.

What is Trazodone used to treat?

This medication is used for the treatment of depression, insomnia associated with depression and may also be used for the treatment of anxiety and panic attacks. This drug helps to improve your mood, appetite, and energy level.

How to use Trazodone?

The dose of the drug is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Take this drug orally, usually once a day at bedtime, on an empty stomach. Do not alter your dose or take this medication more frequently than prescribed. Take this medication exactly as prescribed, to avoid the risk of severe side effects.

It is always better to practice taking this medication at the same time each day, to prevent missing of any dose. Do not stop using this medication even if you feel good. If you stop using this drug suddenly, you may experience side effects like anxiety, agitation, and insomnia (trouble sleeping). To prevent the above side effects, your doctor may gradually decrease the dose.

You may start noticing the full benefits of this medication within a week, and some patients may take longer than two weeks. Notify your doctor if your condition remains same or worsens.

What are the side effects of Trazodone?

The common side effects of trazodone such as sleepiness (drowsiness), dizziness, blurred vision, headache, constipation, nausea and vomiting. If these effects are mild, they may go away within a few days or weeks. If you notice any of these effects continue or get worse inform your doctor as soon as possible.

Trazodone oral tablet may cause drowsiness. You should not drive, or use machinery, or do other activities that require alertness unless you sure do it.

Inform your doctor promptly if you notice any severe side effects, like shaking (tremors), a problem in urinating, blood in urine, ringing in the ears, signs of infection (such as a persistent sore throat, fever), shortness of breath, stomach/abdominal pain.

Get emergency medical assistance right away, if you observe any of these effects like chest pain radiating to the jaw/left arm, fainting, fast/irregular heartbeat, seizures, eye pain/swelling/redness, widened pupils, vision changes.

This drug may increase serotonin level and rarely cause a severe condition known as serotonin syndrome/toxicity. The risk may get higher if you are also using other medicines that increase serotonin level, so inform your doctor or pharmacist about all the drugs you are taking. Serotonin syndrome Symptoms include agitation, confusion or trouble thinking, hallucinations (seeing or hearing something that isn’t there), problems with coordination, fast heart rate, tight muscles, trouble walking, nausea, vomiting diarrhea.

Trazodone very rarely causes a severe allergic reaction. Inform your doctor right away if you notice symptoms like trouble breathing, swelling of your face, tongue, eyes, or mouth, rash, hives (itchy welts), or blisters, alone or with a fever or joint pain

This is not a full record of all possible side effects. If you observe other side effects not listed, reach out to your doctor/ physician/ pharmacist.

What are the precautions while using Trazodone?

Before taking this drug, inform your doctor/pharmacist if you have any drug or food allergies or you are allergic to it or nefazodone.

This medicine may cause dizziness or drowsiness or blur your vision. Alcohol or marijuana can cause more dizziness or drowsiness. Avoid alcoholic beverages. Inform your doctor if you are taking marijuana.

Trazodone may induce a condition that affects the heart rhythm (QT prolongation). QT prolongation can infrequently cause serious (rarely fatal) fast/irregular heartbeat and other symptoms (like severe dizziness, fainting) that need medical attention immediately.

The chances of QT prolongation may increases if you have certain medical issues or you are on other drugs that may cause QT prolongation. Before taking trazodone, inform your doctor/pharmacist about all the medications you are using and if you have the following issues such as certain heart problems (slow heartbeat, heart failure, QT prolongation in the EKG), family history of some heart problems (QT prolongation in the EKG, sudden cardiac death).

Older adults are very susceptible to the side effects of this drug, mainly drowsiness, dizziness, and QT prolongation.

Low potassium or magnesium in the blood may enhance your risk of QT prolongation. This risk may rise if you are on certain drugs like diuretic or if you have certain medical issues like severe sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting. Inform your doctor about taking trazodone safely.

Avoid this medication during pregnancy, used only when needed. Seek advice regarding the risks and benefits of the drug from your doctor.

What are the drug Interactions of Trazodone?

Some drugs can affect the removal of trazodone from your body, that may affect how trazodone works. For examples antifungals (like itraconazole, ketoconazole), HIV protease inhibitors (like ritonavir, indinavir), macrolide antibiotics (like erythromycin), rifamycins (like rifampin), drugs used to treat seizures (like phenytoin), among others.

Digoxin (used to treat various heart conditions) may interact with this drug.

Using MAO inhibitors with this drug may induce a serious (possibly fatal) drug interaction. Avoid taking MAO inhibitors (such as phenelzine, isocarboxazid, linezolid, tranylcypromine, procarbazine, methylene blue, moclobemide, rasagiline, safinamide, selegiline) during the treatment with this medicine. Avoid using most of the MAO inhibitors for two weeks before and after the treatment with this drug. Seek advice from your doctor when to start or stop taking this medication.

The risk of serotonin syndrome/toxicity rises if you are also taking other drugs that increase serotonin level. For examples drugs such as MDMA/ecstasy, St. John’s wort, certain antidepressants (SSRIs like fluoxetine/paroxetine, SNRIs like duloxetine/venlafaxine), among others.

Inform your doctor/pharmacist if you are also taking other products that cause drowsiness for example antihistamines (like diphenhydramine, cetirizine), drugs for sleep or anxiety (like alprazolam, diazepam, zolpidem), muscle relaxants, and narcotic pain relievers (like codeine), alcohol, marijuana.

Read all the labels carefully on all your medicines (like an allergy or a cough and cold products) as they may contain ingredients which may cause drowsiness.


Antidepressant drugs are used to treat various conditions, for example, mental/mood disorders and depression. These medications help to prevent suicidal thoughts/attempts and provide other significant benefits. However, a small number of people (below 25 years ) who use antidepressants for any condition may observe worsening of depression, other mental/ mood symptoms, or suicidal thoughts/attempts. However, it is necessary to seek advice from your doctor about the risks and benefits of the antidepressant medication.

Inform your doctor immediately if you notice worsening of depression/other psychiatric conditions, unexpected behavior changes (possible like suicidal thoughts/attempts), or other mental/mood changes (panic attacks, new/worsening anxiety, irritability, trouble sleeping, hostile/angry feelings, very rapid speech, impulsive actions, severe restlessness). Observe for these symptoms when a new antidepressant drug is started or when the dose is altered.

What are the forms and strengths of Trazodone?

Forms: Tablet
Strengths: 50mg, 100mg, 150mg, 300mg

Forms: Extended-release tablet
Strengths: 150mg, 300mg

What is the dosage of Trazodone?

For Depression:

Adult (18–64 years):

Initially, 150mg/day orally in divided dose is given every 8-12 hour, if needed increase dose by 50mg/day every 3-7 days.

Outpatient: not more than 400mg/day.

Inpatient: Not more than 600mg/day.

Oleptro (extended-release):

Initial 150mg orally at bedtime and may increase by 75mg/day for every three days, not to exceed 375mg/day. Swallow whole or may break in half along the scored line. Do not chew or crush the tablet.


Below 6 years: It is not safe to use this drug as safety and efficacy have not been established yet.

6-12 years: Initially 1.5-2mg/kg/day orally in divided doses not to exceed 6mg/kg/day divided dose every 8 hours.

Above 12 years: Take 25-50mg/day orally, increase by 100-150mg in divided doses.

Geriatric (65 years and older):

Immediate-release: 25-50mg orally every day at bedtime if required increase dose by 25-50mg every three days in inpatient or every week in case of outpatient not to exceed 75-150mg/day.

Extended-release: take a dose of 150mg initially orally at bedtime; if needed increase by 75mg/day every third day; not to exceed 375mg/day.

For Insomnia:

Adult (18–64 years):

50-100mg orally every day preferably at bedtime.

For Aggressive Behaviour:

Adult (18–64 years):

Initial: 50mg orally every 12 hours.

Maintenance dose: 75-400mg/day orally in divided dose every 6-12 hour.

For Prevention of Migraine:

Adult (18–64 years):

100mg orally every day.


Do not administer trazodone within 14 days of administering an MAO inhibitor when treating a psychiatric disorder.


TheMedPharma has made every effort to make sure that all the information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up-to-date. However, this website should not be considered as a substitute for the advice, knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or licensed health care professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subjected to changes if required. The lack of warnings or other information for a given drug does not mean that the drug or its combination is safe, effective or appropriate for use in all patients.