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Trintellix Tapering

This entry was posted in Antidepressant on by .

Last Updated on March 2, 2021 by Carol Gillette

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Alternative to Meds Editorial Team
Written by Lyle Murphy
Medically Reviewed by Dr Samuel Lee MD

 
If Trintellix, classed as an atypical antidepressant, did not yield the desired results, you may be considering Trintellix tapering as the next step of your overall health plan.

The antidepressant Trintellix is intended only as a prescription antidepressant when other antidepressants have not worked. Do not despair. Antidepressant medication may not have been what you really needed in the first place.

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As stated above, the antidepressant Trintellix is intended only as a prescription antidepressant when other antidepressants have not worked, rather than a first-line treatment choice.1 This would probably mean that a person taking Trintellix had tapered off another antidepressant medication before starting to take Trintellix. Perhaps this process went smoothly, or perhaps it did not go as easily as hoped. Tapering Trintellix, as is the case with many drugs, can be difficult without good planning and expert guidance. It is always advisable to be aware of FDA recommendations, information, and cautions regarding starting and stopping Trintellix or other prescription drug treatments.

Two Most Common Reasons for Tapering Trintellix

reasons for Trintellix titration

In general, there are two main reasons people might consider tapering Trintellix or other types of medication. One is that the drug possibly did not bring the relief that was hoped for, as mentioned above. The results and improvements might have been less than expected. In the case of Trintellix in particular, the drug is FDA approved only for the treatment of MDD, (major depressive disorder) and only when other drugs have not worked in prior treatment.5

However, sometimes the lines become blurred when it comes to selecting a particular drug or class of drugs for treatment. Sometimes this results in “off label” prescribing. While the practice is not illegal, it is a little like experimenting outside the lines, outside the guidelines laid down and published FDA and drug manufacturer literature. The results can be unpredictable. Unfortunately, this may lead to somewhat desperately trying to quit Trintellix as quickly as possible so that another drug can be introduced.1

side effects The second reason is that the side effects of the drug became intolerable, and the need for Trintellix titration became acute and observable. This is a very common reason a person may desire to get off Trintellix. Since starting to take the drug, various side effects may have emerged which made continuing the drug therapy uncomfortable or even intolerable to continue. It may be helpful, if you find yourself in this type of situation, to realize that many others have experienced similar problems. You are not alone.

In either circumstance, this scenario could have repeated multiple times, switching from drug to drug, trying to wean off Trintellix or another drug to avoid side effects such as nausea, headaches, diarrhea, sexual dysfunction, insomnia, or others. This is a potentially frustrating and sometimes scary difficulty to find oneself in. More information on specific and common Trintellix side effects can be found below.

Depression as a Diagnosed Mental Illness

depressionDepression is classified in the DSM (diagnostic manual) as a disease that has some or all of the following characteristics: depressed mood, thoughts about suicide or death, sadness, hopelessness, fatigue, loss of interest generally in life including loss of interest in sex, sleep disturbances such as insomnia or sleeping too much, increased or decreased appetite, significant weight loss when not dieting, prolonged irritability, anger, persisting unexplained aches and pains, anxiety, agitation, cognitive impairment sometimes called “brain fog,” inability to concentrate, think clearly or quickly, inability to make decisions, slowed body movements, and other unwanted conditions.

Amazingly, these, among others, are also known side effects of antidepressant drugs such as Trintellix.

So if taking a drug such as Trintellix did not provide relief for these types of symptoms, it might be time to consider how to get off Trintellix and try other approaches, as opposed to other drugs, to address the problem. Other approaches that don’t involve drugs at all, can be found below in this article.

Trintellix Titration With Inpatient Support

Alternative to Meds Center has helped many people to extricate themselves from such a tangle of methods of treatment that were not as effective as was needed. How to wean off Trintellix safely and gently is a subject that deserves attention to detail, and understanding what is going on when you taper off antidepressants. Our treatment plans are based on testing and the discovery and treatment of root causes. We do not believe that simply masking symptoms results in optimum treatment results. Trintellix titration (as with other medications) does not have to introduce further complications or harsh symptoms. We specialize in safely tapering Trintellix as well as other medications, with great success. More on our Trintellix cessation protocols can be found below.

Trintellix Side Effects

trintellix side effectsAccording to the drug manufacturer, the most commonly reported side effects for Trintellix include nausea, constipation, and vomiting. Other more severe side effects that consumers and caregivers are advised to watch for while taking Trintellix include suicide attempts, suicidal thoughts, serotonin syndrome, violent behavior, akathisia, worsened depression, mania, hypomania, trouble sleeping, drop-in sodium blood levels, sexual numbing, dry mouth, and many others.2, 5

These are typically the same side effects of virtually all other antidepressants on the market. Such side effects can be difficult to tolerate and may make this type of treatment unworkable. It is possible that weaning off Trintellix can open the door to other, non-drug-based treatments, that may be more effective in helping you reach your health goals.

Cautions Regarding Trintellix and Pregnancy

The drug manufacturer indicates that if Trintellix is taken during the last trimester of pregnancy, the baby may be born with a condition known as PPHN, which means persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn, a persistent breathing difficulty.3 This may be another very good reason to consider Trintellix tapering for a woman who is planning to become pregnant, and who wants to avoid potential birth complications for the infant.

Advertising for antidepressants is jawdroppingly careless when it says you can be confident that “such-and-such” drug doesn’t cause birth defects. The truth is that few-to-no studies have been done on the effects of drugs and pregnancy and the ones that have been done were done on rats and rabbits. The information just isn’t available or known. A cautionary stance would be advised when it comes to the health mother and child. There are non-drug-based remedies for depression that might be well considered.4

Special Notes About the Name “Trintellix”

Trintellix is one of a group of relatively new antidepressant medications that have been on the market since 2013. Trintellix was first called Brintellix. However, a number of instances were reported where Brintellix was confused with another similar-sounding but entirely different drug, one that was used for anti-blood-clotting. In 2016 the drug manufacturer changed the name of Brintellix, the antidepressant, to Trintellix to avoid more instances of this confusion in the future.

How to Wean Off Trintellix Safely

Alternative to Meds Center offers a Trintellix tapering program done gradually and comfortably over a two month period of time. Longer programs can easily be arranged if desired. Clients are under the care of our licensed doctors, integrative psychiatrist, nursing staff, and clinicians who are all familiar with the intricacies of getting off Trintellix and other medications comfortably and safely.

natural trintellix tapering treatmentThe program features many components to support and even soften Trintellix tapering. Some of these include testing for accumulations of neurotoxins, removal of these toxic substances through gentle cleansing methods, testing for and correcting vitamin and mineral deficiencies, low-temperature sauna, comforting mineral baths, refreshing foot baths, therapeutic massage, mild trainer-led exercise, yoga, meditation, nebulized glutathione treatments, bentonite clay packs, acupuncture, acupressure, colonics, and many other gentle adjunctive procedures that are designed to considerably ease the Trintellix tapering process. Done in this way, Trintellix titration can be surprisingly mild and easy to tolerate.

holistic therapiesCounseling is also offered, along with life coaching, that can help a person regain balance and renewed positive energy for life. Equine-assisted therapy, music therapy, and art therapy are also offered and are very popular with our clients.

We are always finding there is more to understand about how the CNS (central nervous system), hormones, brain chemistry, microbiome, and other important health matters all interconnect. This fundamental and important information can greatly assist a person who is getting off Trintellix. This information as well as at-home tools and practical approaches to self-care are invaluable for clients as they leave the program.

As well, Alternative to Meds Center provides a comprehensive series of educational modules. The in-class portions of the program aim to empower the client with practical and useful information about natural methods of neurochemistry support, the role of nutrition in mental wellness, and many important subjects. Tapering Trintellix does not have to be torturous or difficult. This is especially true when done in a truly caring and compassionate inpatient setting, with 24/7 staff on hand throughout the process.

Find Out More About Our Trintellix Tapering Programs

You or your loved one may benefit from the services we provide to address root causes and thereby improve mental health naturally. Please contact us at Alternative to Meds Center, to find out much more detailed information about our Trintellix tapering programs at the center.


1. Trintellix – New Once Daily Antidepressant With a Unique Multi-Modal Mechanism of Action, Claimsecure Drug Review Vol XIV, Issue 1 [INTERNET] [cited 2020 Jun 5]

2. Trintellix Medication Label Update, Takeda website [INTERNET] 2018 May 2 [cited 2020 Jun 5]

3. Medication Guide Trintellix (vortioxetine) published by Takeda Pharmaceuticals America, approved by the US Food & Drug Administration [2017 Apr] [Internet] [cited 2020 Jun 5]

4. Medical News Today, “Trintellix: Side Effects, Dosage, Uses and More.” Reviewed 2019 Aug 31 [cited 2020 Aug 24]

5. Takeda News Release, “New Data Added to TRINTELLIX (vortioxetine) Labeling Demonstrated Superiority Over Escitaloprm in Improving SSRI-Induced Sexual Dysfunction in Patients with Major Depressive Disorder.” [Internet] 2018 Oct 22 [cited 2020 Aug 23]



This content has been reviewed and approved by a licensed physician.

Dr. Samuel Lee

Dr. Samuel Lee is a board-certified psychiatrist, specializing in a spiritually-based mental health discipline and integrative approaches. He graduated with an MD at Loma Linda University School of Medicine and did a residency in psychiatry at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle. He has also been an inpatient adult psychiatrist at Kaweah Delta Mental Health Hospital and the primary attending geriatric psychiatrist at the Auerbach Inpatient Psychiatric Jewish Home Hospital. In addition, he served as the general adult outpatient psychiatrist at Kaiser Permanente.  He is board-certified in psychiatry and neurology and has a B.A. Magna Cum Laude in Religion from Pacific Union College. His specialty is in natural healing techniques that promote the body’s innate ability to heal itself.

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