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What Is Vilazodone Used For?

How Does Vilazodone Work?

The exact way that vilazodone works to treat depression is unknown. However, it is known that vilazodone works on a specific brain chemical called serotonin. Serotonin is a chemical in the brain that is thought to affect mood and behavior. It is one of several chemicals used by nerve cells to send messages to each other.
 
When serotonin levels in the brain become unbalanced, it can cause a variety of conditions, including depression. Vilazodone increases the activity of serotonin by blocking serotonin reuptake (reuptake is the process by which nerve cells recapture released serotonin). This allows more serotonin to be available in the space between the nerve cells.
 
Vilazodone also binds to certain serotonin receptors. However, it acts as a partial agonist at these receptors, which means that it causes a weaker response than would result from the binding of serotonin itself.
 

Can Children Use It?

Vilazodone is not approved for use in children (usually defined as younger than 18 years of age), as it has not been adequately studied in this age group. It is not known whether this medication is safe or effective for children. All antidepressants may also increase the risk of suicidal thoughts and behaviors in children, adolescents, and young adults (see Viibryd and Suicide).
 

Can Older Adults Use It?

Yes, older adults can use this medication. In clinical studies, older adults did not appear to respond to the medication differently than younger age groups. However, older adults may be more sensitive to certain side effects of vilazodone, such as low blood sodium (hyponatremia).
 

Is Vilazodone Used for Off-Label Reasons?

On occasion, your healthcare provider may recommend this product for something other than depression treatment (this would be known as an "off-label" use). Based on off-label uses of other antidepressants, possible off-label uses for vilazodone may include the treatment of:
 
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Vilazodone Drug Information

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