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Amitriptyline Maff Hot

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Written by Maff     December 16, 2008    
 
3.4
 
5.8 (1)
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Amitriptyline belongs to a class of antidepressant drugs known as tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs). This class of drugs were one of the first used in the treatment of depression and work by raising levels of important mood controlling neurotransmitters such as serotonin and noradrenaline/norepinephrine in the brain. They do this by prolonging the time these neurotransmitters are present in the synapses (gaps) between nerve cells which means brain activity continues to be stimulated.

One of the drawbacks of TCAs is that they also block receptors for another neurotransmitters - acetylcholine. This leads to side-effects such as drowsiness and memory loss. This is one reason why TCAs are not used much today but have generally been replaced by newer drugs such as serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as Prozac.

The 'side-effects' of amitriptyline however have been used in recent years for the treatment of conditions including sleep disorders, chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), and fibromyalgia. ME/CFS and fibromyalgia patients almost always have sleep disturbances and the anticholinergic effects of amitriptyline are used to help patients with this. The drug may also help with the pain of fibromyalgia.

 

 

 

Editor reviews

I used low dose amitriptyline (10mg) as a sleep aid for sleep problems associated with chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). I found it helped with getting to sleep. It basically knocked me out in a way that felt like a general anaesthetic.

That would have been fine but the next day I felt extremely drowsy and wobbly on my feet and was basically unable to function. It was like I was walking around like a zombie. My memory was also affected.

It could be that I was particularly sensitive but 10mg is already a low dose (much higher doses of 50mg+ are used for depression treatment) so there was little point tinkering with dosages.

Not a good experience for me. In terms of medications the benzodiazepines such as diazepam/Valium help with sleep without the next day side-effects and I have also found melatonin and phosphatidylserine supplements highly effective.

Overall rating 
 
3.4
Perceived Effectiveness  
 
4.0
Lack of side effects (tolerability)  
 
2.0
Ease of use  
 
5.0
Value for money  
 
2.0
Would you recommend? 
 
4.0
Maff Reviewed by Maff December 16, 2008
Last updated: July 29, 2009
#1 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (107)

Caused severe drowsiness

I used low dose amitriptyline (10mg) as a sleep aid for sleep problems associated with chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). I found it helped with getting to sleep. It basically knocked me out in a way that felt like a general anaesthetic.

That would have been fine but the next day I felt extremely drowsy and wobbly on my feet and was basically unable to function. It was like I was walking around like a zombie. My memory was also affected.

It could be that I was particularly sensitive but 10mg is already a low dose (much higher doses of 50mg+ are used for depression treatment) so there was little point tinkering with dosages.

Not a good experience for me. In terms of medications the benzodiazepines such as diazepam/Valium help with sleep without the next day side-effects and I have also found melatonin and phosphatidylserine supplements highly effective.

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User reviews

Average user rating from: 1 user(s)

Overall rating 
 
5.8
Perceived Effectiveness  
 
7.0  (1)
Lack of side effects (tolerability)  
 
3.0  (1)
Ease of use  
 
9.0  (1)
Value for money  
 
5.0  (1)
Would you recommend? 
 
5.0  (1)
Ratings (the higher the better)
  • Perceived Effectiveness
  • Lack of side effects (tolerability)
  • Ease of use
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Comments
My doctor prescribed 50 mg when I was suffering from cancer and my osteoarthritis was worsening. At that time, I was a little depressed, because I'd just found out my cancer was much worse, I was weak from chemo and the arthritis (in hip and shoulders) was becoming extremely painful.
Even now, in remission, I take it each night and can almost sleep through the night (I still have to shift every couple of hours because my hip becomes too painful). However, the pain from my shoulders rarely even surfaces now.
I haven't noticed any memory loss, but I would have attributed that to chemo anyway. It does give me a horrible case of dry mouth each morning. This, in a way, is good, as it's helped me increase my water intake.
For a week, when my arthritis was less painful, I stopped it, and was in such severe pain in my hip and shoulders that I couldn't sleep.
I really never experienced any anti-depressant qualities other than those caused by being able to sleep and lack of pain.
Overall rating 
 
5.8
Perceived Effectiveness  
 
7.0
Lack of side effects (tolerability)  
 
3.0
Ease of use  
 
9.0
Value for money  
 
5.0
Would you recommend? 
 
5.0
Reviewed by Lisa Gagnon March 27, 2010

Helps with arthritis

My doctor prescribed 50 mg when I was suffering from cancer and my osteoarthritis was worsening. At that time, I was a little depressed, because I'd just found out my cancer was much worse, I was weak from chemo and the arthritis (in hip and shoulders) was becoming extremely painful.
Even now, in remission, I take it each night and can almost sleep through the night (I still have to shift every couple of hours because my hip becomes too painful). However, the pain from my shoulders rarely even surfaces now.
I haven't noticed any memory loss, but I would have attributed that to chemo anyway. It does give me a horrible case of dry mouth each morning. This, in a way, is good, as it's helped me increase my water intake.
For a week, when my arthritis was less painful, I stopped it, and was in such severe pain in my hip and shoulders that I couldn't sleep.
I really never experienced any anti-depressant qualities other than those caused by being able to sleep and lack of pain.

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