You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking amoxapine if you have:
- Bipolar disorder or a family history of bipolar disorder (also known as manic depression)
- A history of suicide attempts or suicidal thoughts
- Worsening anxiety or agitation
- Had a recent heart attack
- Heart problems, including heart disease
- Seizures or epilepsy
- Bladder problems or difficulty passing urine
- An enlarged prostate (also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH)
- Any allergies, including allergies to foods, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you:
- Are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant (see Amoxapine and Pregnancy)
- Are breastfeeding (see Amoxapine and Breastfeeding)
- Drink alcohol regularly.
Be sure to tell your healthcare provider about all other medicines you may be taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
(Click Precautions and Warnings With Amoxapine for more information on this topic, including information on who should not take the drug.)
Amoxapine belongs to a class of medications called tricyclic antidepressants, although it is sometimes classified as a "tetracyclic" antidepressant, due to its chemical structure. It is not entirely clear how amoxapine works.
It does affect several chemicals in the brain, including serotonin and norepinephrine. It is thought that maybe amoxapine allows these chemical to stay in the brain longer, which can help with depression symptoms. The medication also blocks dopamine receptors, which is why it is especially useful for psychotic depression.