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You may find that you are more sensitive to the effects of alcohol while on Pristiq. The prescribing information recommends completely avoiding alcohol while taking this medicine, due to the risk of coma or other problems. If you do decide to drink, discuss the matter with your doctor first, and don't drink alcohol at the same time you take your dosage.

Can I Drink Alcohol While Taking Pristiq?

The prescribing information for Pristiq® (desvenlafaxine succinate) warns that people should avoid alcohol while taking it. The main concern is that Pristiq and alcohol may have additive central nervous system effects, meaning that Pristiq may increase the risk of certain effects of alcohol, and vice versa.
However, the advice to completely avoid alcohol is not practical for all individuals. Practically speaking, when many healthcare providers are asked whether it is okay to drink alcohol while on Pristiq, they recommend that if a person chooses to drink, they only drink light to moderate amounts, and only after they understand the effects that Pristiq and other medicines they are taking have on their body.

What Will Happen If I Drink While on Pristiq?

While you are taking Pristiq, you might find that you are more sensitive to the effects of alcohol. You may not be able to "handle" the alcohol as well as you previously did. More seriously, dangerous problems could occur, especially if you drink a large amount of alcohol or take a Pristiq overdose. These effects might include passing out, slow or shallow breathing, a coma, or other serious problems.
Interestingly, one clinical study failed to show that Pristiq increased the physical or mental impairments caused by alcohol. Nonetheless, caution is advised.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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