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What Is Vilazodone Used For?

If you have low energy, difficulty concentrating, or other symptoms of major depression, your healthcare provider may recommend vilazodone. In most cases, the medication is prescribed for the treatment of major depression. However, sometimes it is used "off-label" (prescribed for conditions it is not approved to treat). These off-label uses of vilazodone include the treatment of OCD and panic disorder, for example.

An Overview of Vilazodone Uses

Vilazodone (Viibryd™) is a prescription medication licensed for the treatment of major depressive disorder, sometimes called clinical depression or just major depression.
Major depressive disorder is a serious medical condition. It is not the same thing as a passing low mood or simply feeling sad or down in the dumps. It is a persistent low mood that interferes with a person's ability to function. People with major depression often find it difficult to do the things they normally did before they were depressed.
Some of the common symptoms of major depression include:
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in things you used to find enjoyable
  • Changes in appetite (eating more or less) or weight (gaining or losing weight)
  • Changes in sleep (sleeping more or less than before)
  • Low energy or fatigue
  • Feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, or guilt
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Feeling irritable or restless
  • Thoughts of death or suicide
  • Physical symptoms, such as headaches or pain.
Like all antidepressants, it may take a few weeks after starting vilazodone to notice an improvement in your symptoms. Usually, physical symptoms, such as appetite and sleep changes, improve first. Improvements in mood and energy may take longer. It may even take a few months for the full benefits of the medication to occur. It is important to try and be patient and give the medication a chance to work.
Vilazodone is used to treat the symptoms of depression; it is not a depression cure. No antidepressant can cure this condition. Therefore, you may need to continue antidepressant treatment even after you feel better. Your healthcare provider will tell you how long you need to take vilazodone.
Nonmedication treatments, such as counseling or therapy, may be used along with antidepressant treatment (see Psychotherapy for Depression). Talk to your healthcare provider about nonmedication treatment options that may be beneficial for you.
(Click Depression Treatment to read more about managing major depression.)
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