Imipramine is a drug that was first synthesized as an antihistamine that was used to relieve the symptoms of allergies like reactions to insect bites or stings, hay fever, hives, and conjunctivitis. Gradually its usage transcended into many forms of problems like for treating motion sickness prevention and also to treat insomnia imipramine is used as a short-term remedy. Over time, in the later years, the antipsychotic effects of chlorpromazine that was a constituent of the drug were discovered and imipramine was then developed and studied for use in patients with schizophrenia as an antipsychotic. Imipramine uses is now not just limited to antihistamine, it is used as antidepressants and even the condition of bed-wetting by blocking the effect of acetylcholine, a natural substance on the bladder.
Chemistry and Effects of Imipramine in Human Body
The imipramine hydrochloride or as commonly referred to as imipramine HCl belongs to a group of medicines known as tricyclics or tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs). The tricyclics should only be taken under an expert or professional prescribed suggestion as it is given when no other antidepressants work efficiently and fail to relieve the patient’s depression.
Chemistry and Working of Imipramine Hydrochloride
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The Molecular Formula Imipramine is C19H24N2 with a molecular weight of 280.4 gram/mol. It also goes by the name of Imidobenzyle, along with Imipramine and very popular as Imipramine Hydrochloride, and Imipramine Monohydrochloride, Imipramine Pamoate, Imizin, Janimine are other synonyms of imipramine.
Tricyclic antidepressants as the name suggests works to relieve the symptoms of depression. Depression is primarily a clinical condition wherein the person may feel less happy and energetic and is always feeling low. The tricyclics work by keeping more serotonin and norepinephrine which are made naturally by our body available more to our brain. These chemicals are thought to affect our moods and keeping them available for the brain helps elevate the mood and thus to some degree relieve depression.
The tricyclics imipramine blocks D2 (Dopamine) receptors.
Imipramine acts as an anticholinergic, specifically, an antagonist of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptors that can be prescribed for enuresis and for psychosis in elderly patients.
Imipramine antagonizes adrenergic receptors, epinephrine, thus sometimes causing orthostatic hypotension and soothing effects in depression.
They are also sometimes used to help people with panic disorder.
Imipramine Tablets and Imipramine Doses
Imipramine tablets are available as an Imipramine brand name drug and a generic drug, Tofranil. Other Imipramine brand names are the ANTIDEP tab, DEPSIN tab, DEPSIN PLUS tab, DEPSONIL tab, IMIPRAMINE tab, IMIPRAMINE cap, etc.
Imipramine comes in two forms; it can be taken as a tablet or a capsule, both forms are to be taken by mouth.
It treats two conditions- depression and enuresis (bed-wetting).
How To Take Imipramine Hydrochloride
Even if you feel well, do not discontinue the medication without consulting your doctor.
Try to take the imipramine tablets at the same time each day, it becomes easy to familiarize your body with it.
Swallow your imipramine tablets or capsules with the help of a glass of water and avoid alcohol intake with it.
Continue with the medicine, the benefits will start to appear and symptoms will be relieved after a few weeks.
One can take it before or after the food or meal intake.
If you abruptly stop the drug, the condition may worsen so talk to a professional.
Gradually decline the dosage of the drug and then stop it.
If one misses a dose then avoid taking double doses, continue on with the next dose the next day as usual without panicking.
Imipramine Uses and Side Effects
Main usage in treating depression.
The chronic bed-wetting even at a later stage for older kids who have tried all other ways can gain relief from the usage of imipramine.
Imipramine uses is different in lower doses and in higher doses, the condition of migraine can be treated by lower doses of imipramine.
It can also be used to treat chronic pain, especially in older people.
Mostly off-label uses include treatment of the condition of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
Imipramine Side Effect
In children, the side effects include- nervousness, tiredness, nausea, vomiting, sleep issues, such as trouble sleeping and nightmares, stomach pain, stomach cramps, and diarrhea.
In adolescents and adults, the side effects include- breast swelling in men and women, nausea, dry mouth, blurred vision, trouble urinating, vomiting, constipation and even diarrhea in few patients, muscle stiffness, restlessness, ringing in the ears, shakiness which are manifested in the form of tremors, numbness or tingling of the hands and feet and acute to chronic pain or redness and swelling of arms or legs.
In case of after-effects like chest pain, slow or fast or irregular heartbeats, fainting and severe dizziness, seizures, slurred speech, weakness on one side of the body, eye pain, widened pupils, vision changes, hallucinations, loss of coordination, twitching muscles, unexplained fever and unusual agitation/restlessness one must immediately consult the doctor. This can indicate a sign of serotonin syndrome or serotonin toxicity that is a very serious condition due to various interactions of the drug imipramine.
Imipramine or Imipramine hydrochloride evidently have many uses and are widely used as antidepressants and for treating enuresis. The use and importance of imipramine are known for many years since the early 1950s and it is a very potent chemical drug that is only used as a last resort when all other antidepressants have not relieved the symptoms. The potency of imipramine should not be underestimated and it is not an over-the-counter drug and only to be taken when a professional doctor prescribes it. One must follow all the instructions as the doctor suggests and only under guidance should increase the dosage or stop according to the instructions by the doctor.