For most adults who are starting depression treatment with desipramine, dosing starts at 100 mg to 200 mg, either taken as a single dose or split into several smaller doses throughout the day. Teenagers or elderly people who are taking the antidepressant should start with a lower dosage (between 25 mg and 100 mg). In order for the medication to work properly, you must take it as prescribed.
The dose of desipramine hydrochloride (Norpramin®) that your healthcare provider prescribes will vary depending on a number of factors, including:
- Your age
- Other medical conditions you may have
- Other medications you may be currently taking.
As always, do not adjust your dose unless your healthcare provider specifically instructs you to do so.
For depression treatment, the recommended desipramine dose is 100 mg to 200 mg daily (taken either all at once or split up into smaller doses throughout the day). Your healthcare provider should start you at a lower dose and slowly increase your dose if you tolerate desipramine well.
Although desipramine is not approved for use in teens, the manufacturer gives recommendations for desipramine dosing in teens. For the treatment of teenage depression or depression in elderly people, lower doses are recommended. The recommended dose for teens or elderly people is desipramine 25 mg to 100 mg total per day (taken all at once or split into smaller doses).
Some considerations for people taking desipramine include:
- Desipramine should be taken at the same time(s) each day.
- If you do not take your desipramine as scheduled, take your missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if you usually take your dose at night, you may not want to make up the missed dose, due to the risk of drowsiness that occurs when desipramine is taken during the day. Also, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular schedule. Do not take a double dose of desipramine.
- Your desipramine dosage can be taken with or without food. If it upsets your stomach, try taking it with food.
- If you are experiencing bothersome drowsiness or dizziness with desipramine, ask your healthcare provider about taking your desipramine dose at bedtime (instead of during the day). This may help decrease drowsiness or dizziness.
- It often takes several weeks to see the full antidepressant effects of desipramine. Try to give desipramine a chance to work before becoming discouraged.
- For desipramine to work properly, you have to take it as prescribed. The medicine will not work if you take it in a way other than how your healthcare provider has prescribed it.
- If you are unsure about anything related to your dosage or desipramine in general, please talk with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist. Do not stop taking desipramine without first discussing it with your healthcare provider. Stopping the medicine abruptly may increase the risk of withdrawal symptoms (see Desipramine Withdrawal).