Side effects for this antidepressant are similar to many other antidepressant medications, and may present as mild, moderate or severe and potentially life-threatening.
Withdrawal can also cause adverse effects, and the FDA and other regulatory bodies stipulate that this drug should never be stopped abruptly. A slow taper is recommended as this allows time for the body to adjust in a more gentle fashion.
We will cover some of the most types of frequently asked for information below. Always consult your primary caregiver for specific concerns about taking Remeron, reactions to the drug that seem unusual or make you feel uncomfortable. We can also provide more information on request.
Remeron (mirtazapine) was approved primarily for the treatment of MDD or major depressive disorder. MDD symptoms are described in the DSM V, and include these diagnostic criteria:
As stated, before diagnosing a person with MDD, at least the 2 above elements (along with other diagnostic criteria) must be verified. (1)
It would follow that adequate testing, and investigation would have to be done to rule out these potential root causes for a depressed condition before attempting to medicate the patient.
Such investigations would have to include at a minimum, testing for nutritional deficiencies, environmental toxins, food or other allergies, the presence of neurotoxic elements like heavy metals, pathologies, drug use, addiction or dependence, and many other potential agents or influences or substances known to be causal agents in depressed states.
Remeron has also come to be prescribed for many off-label uses, such as:
PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder): In diagnosing PTSD disorders, some qualifying symptoms listed in the DSM V have been revised, for example in “Criterion A” the scope of the diagnosis was significantly narrowed. The diagnostic criteria no longer include the unexpected death of a family member or close friend, for example, who died of natural causes.
Emotional disorders: The most recent DSM V has now collapsed multiple types of disorders into one over-arching category which it refers to as “emotional disorders”. Emotional disorders, as a group, include the various bipolar disorders, the “distress disorders” which include major depression disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, PTSD, and the “fear disorders” which are the phobias, i.e., social phobia, agoraphobia, etc. (2)
Other off-label uses: including for insomnia (3), itching, nausea and tension headache (4), and as an appetite stimulant (5).
As antidepressants are often used in conjunction with multiple medications and electroshock therapy to treat psychiatrically diagnosed conditions, it should be noted that the DSM V diagnostic criteria changes apply to adults as well as to adolescents and children. (6)
As discussed earlier, there are a substantial number of names for mirtazapine around the world. When mirtazapine is combined with velaxafine it is sometimes called “California Rocket Fuel”, indicating recreational use.
There can be a wide range of side effects experienced while taking mirtazapine or Remeron.
Common REMERON Side Effects can include:
Withdrawal effects during cessation should be observed carefully, even at a slow taper, as these include some potentially life-threatening events.
Withdrawal symptoms from Remeron include:
Talk to a trusted healthcare practitioner who can help you devise and implement a structured, safe plan for withdrawal over a period of time. Never attempt a “cold turkey” approach to coming off antidepressants of any type.
Staying hydrated, getting enough rest, eating well are some of the things you can do to help the process along without getting extremely sick.
Remeron has been around since the late 1990’s. Over time, a fairly substantial body of information has been able to accumulate on the drug. Here are some of the topics and questions that are often searched for.
At ATMC, we can help a person struggling with dependence to antidepressants such as Remeron/mirtazapine. Often, a medication can lead to side effects which become intolerable and this can lead to the decision to discontinue the medication.
In some cases, the person’s original symptoms were not helped by the medication, so while these are still present, there is the additional burden of withdrawal symptoms. This can be a debilitating situation, which could be better managed by inpatient care in a facility equipped to help alleviate both areas of distress.
Our protocols are time-tested over more than a decade. Each client’s program is individually designed and carefully monitored throughout the process to ensure the maximum safety and comfort of the client.
We agree with the DSA revising their diagnostic criteria, now requiring elimination of possible physical, pathological or environmentally linked or causative factors before turning to a prescription drug. This is a sound protocol, but, we have observed, it has not consistently been used in general medical or psychiatric practice.
Many people have been prescribed antidepressants whose depression, insomnia, or anxiety could have possibly been treated without drugs, had the investigative work been done prior to choosing prescription drugs as the first line treatment.
Nonetheless, our clinical experience informs us that a significant number, perhaps even a majority, may be suffering from an unnecessary over-prescription of medication that followed a substandard or completely absent investigation of root causes for their symptoms.
Oddly enough, many persons who had an addiction problem to street drugs are given Remeron by a drug treatment program, often times rather indiscriminately. We have seen many patients that struggle from reported dependence or addiction to Remeron following such treatment decisions.
We truly feel that reservation of a psychiatric diagnosis for drug addicts should be an operating guideline, at least until the person has had a period of time abstaining from their drug of choice and implementing healthy diet and behavioral modalities.
We invite you to contact us to see how we provide safe tapering, in our comfortable, relaxed and beautiful facility, under the supervision of medical staff and highly trained practitioners. Under an integrative approach, more comprehensive investigative steps are taken so we can show each client diversified points that need correcting either psychodynamically, nutritionally or that may respond to neurotoxic body burden removal, and other important clinically relevant and science-based tools. There is much more information we can provide to you on request.
Dr Motl is currently certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in Psychiatry, and Board eligible in Neurology and licensed in the state of Arizona. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree with a major in biology and minors in chemistry and philosophy. He graduated Creighton University School of Medicine with a Doctor of Medicine. Dr. Motl has studied Medical Acupuncture at the Colorado School of Traditional Chinese Medicine and at U.C.L.A.