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Imipramine is a type of tricyclic antidepressant that can be prescribed to treat depression in adults and bedwetting in children. The drug is available in two products. Both products are very similar but look different, come in different strengths, and are priced differently. Imipramine is currently available in both brand-name and generic form.

What Is Imipramine?

Imipramine is a prescription medication that is part of a class of medicines known as tricyclic antidepressants. It is available as two different products: imipramine hydrochloride (Tofranil®) and imipramine pamoate (Tofranil PM®). Tofranil is approved to treat the following conditions:
  • Depression (also known as major depression or clinical depression) in adults
  • Bedwetting in children.
Tofranil PM is licensed only for the treatment of depression in adults.

Who Makes It?

Brand-name imipramine versions (Tofranil and Tofranil PM) are made by Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals. The generic version is made by several manufacturers of generic medications.

What Is the Difference Between Imipramine Hydrochloride and Imipramine Pamoate?

There is very little difference between the two medications. Following are some of the differences between them:
  • While the active part of the drug molecule (the "imipramine" part) is the same for both products, the inactive part (the "hydrochloride" or "pamoate" part) is different.
  • Imipramine hydrochloride comes in tablet form, while imipramine pamoate comes in capsule form. This is an easy way to tell which one you are getting, since sometimes it does not say "hydrochloride" or "pamoate" on the prescription label. Sometimes labels will say "imipramine hcl," which stands for imipramine hydrochloride.
  • They are available in different strengths. Imipramine pamoate is available in higher strengths, while imipramine hydrochloride is available in lower strengths.
  • Imipramine pamoate is not approved for bedwetting, while imipramine hydrochloride is.
  • Imipramine pamoate is usually significantly more expensive than imipramine hydrochloride (because it is newer and there are fewer generic versions).
(For more information, click on the following links:
Feed Your Adult ADHD Brain

Imipramine (Tofranil, Tofranil PM)

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