Brintellix vs Viibryd – Uses, Dosage, Side Effects, Differences


It is the brand name of a drug called vortioxetine, an SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor) and SMS (serotonin receptor modulator). This drug works by increasing serotonin levels.

This antidepressant is used for treating a certain type of depression known as the major depressive disorder. It was first approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2013. However, to avoid confusion with Brilinta (an anti-blood clotting drug), it has been renamed Trintellix.


It is usually prescribed for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD), a serious medical condition that can affect behavior and mood as well as various physical functions, like – sleep and appetite.

In the present day, depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, with an estimated 350 million people being affected, according to the World Health Organization.

Symptoms of depression include:

  • unexplained physical problems, like – headaches or back pain;
  • restlessness;
  • feelings of tearfulness, sadness, hopelessness, or emptiness;
  • agitation;
  • angry outbursts;
  • anxiety;
  • frustration or irritability;
  • recurrent thoughts of death;
  • loss of interest in most or all normal activities;
  • suicidal thoughts;
  • sleeping too much or insomnia;
  • trouble thinking and concentrating;
  • feelings of worthlessness;
  • lack of energy;
  • self-blame;
  • slowed body movements or thinking;
  • unexplained weight loss;
  • reduced appetite.


The usual recommended starting dose is 10 mg taken orally once per day. This dose can be increased to 20 mg per day.

Side Effects And Precautions Of Vortioxetine

Common side effects may include:

  • diarrhea;
  • nausea;
  • dizziness;
  • constipation;
  • itching;
  • abnormal dreams;
  • bloating;
  • dry mouth;
  • sexual dysfunction;
  • vomiting.

Rare side effects may include:

  • tunnel vision;
  • headaches;
  • blurred vision;
  • feeling unsteady;
  • loss of coordination;
  • seeing halos around lights;
  • confusion;
  • unusual bleeding (especially – mouth, nose, vagina, or rectum);
  • hallucinations;
  • eye redness or swelling;
  • memory problems;
  • eye pain;
  • coughing up blood;
  • severe weakness;
  • easy bruising;
  • slurred speech;
  • loss of coordination;
  • a decreased need for sleep;
  • fainting;
  • overactive reflexes;
  • racing thoughts;
  • vomiting;
  • unusual risk-taking behavior;
  • muscle stiffness;
  • fast heart rate;
  • agitation;
  • being more talkative than usual;
  • feelings of extreme sadness or happiness.

To be sure that this medication is good for you, tell your doctor if you:

  • have or had bleeding problems;
  • drink alcoholic beverages;
  • have liver problems;
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, because it is not known precisely if this medication will harm the unborn baby;
  • have or had seizures;
  • have narrow-angle glaucoma;
  • have mania or bipolar disorder;
  • have low levels of sodium in the blood;
  • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed a baby since it is not known exactly if this drug passes into breast milk;
  • have a history of drug abuse.

Important note – antidepressants similar to this one increase the risk of suicidal behavior and thinking in adolescents, children, and young adults with major depressive disorder.

Additionally, this medication may interact with – phenytoin, carbamazepine, monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), rifampicin, fluoxetine, tramadol, buspirone, quinidine, triptans, paroxetine, bupropion, and tryptophan.


It is the brand name of a drug called vilazodone, which works by increasing the amount of serotonin. This medication is used to maintain mental balance and is part of a class of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.


It was first approved in 2011 by the US Food and Drug Administration to treat major depressive disorder, a mental condition characterized by at least 14 days of low mood.


The initial recommended dose of 10 mg once per day for one week. The dose can be increased to 40 mg once per day, after a minimum of one week between dosage increases.

Side Effects And Precautions Of Vilazodone

Common side effects may include:

  • nausea;
  • diarrhea;
  • sleep problems (insomnia);
  • vomiting.

Rare side effects may include:

  • blood in the urine or stools;
  • easy bruising;
  • hallucinations;
  • unusual bleeding (nose, vagina, mouth, or rectum);
  • fainting;
  • red pinpoint spots under the skin;
  • confusion;
  • agitation;
  • sweating;
  • fever;
  • tremors;
  • very stiff muscles;
  • racing thoughts;
  • loss of coordination;
  • decreased inhibitions;
  • overactive reflexes;
  • weakness;
  • uneven heartbeats;
  • memory problems;
  • lightheadedness;
  • shallow breathing;
  • seizures (convulsions);
  • trouble concentrating;
  • extreme thirst;
  • feelings of extreme sadness or happiness;
  • risk-taking behavior.

Stopping this medication abruptly may result in withdrawal symptoms, including:

  • paresthesias (an abnormal sensation like – tickling, tingling, numbness or burning of a person’s skin);
  • headaches;
  • nightmares;
  • vomiting;
  • feeling dizzy;
  • nausea;
  • irritability.

There are no conclusive clinical studies in nursing women, therefore, it is best to avoid it if you are breastfeeding a baby. Also, if you are pregnant or plan to get pregnant, it is safer to avoid this medication since there are no studies regarding its safe use by pregnant women.

Brintellix vs Viibryd – Differences      

Brintellix (active ingredient – vortioxetine) is an antidepressant that affects serotonin in the brain which may be unbalanced.

Viibryd (active ingredient – vilazodone) is an antidepressant in a group of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. This medication works by altering serotonin levels in the brain to help maintain mental balance.

In conclusion, even if these medications have different main ingredients, both affect serotonin levels. Both have plenty of side effects and don’t treat the cause of depression.

5 Remedies For Major Depressive Disorder

#1 Physical Exercise

Any type of physical exercise increases hormones, such as – dopamine and serotonin in the brain, therefore, exercise makes people feel better. Aim for 90 minutes of walking per day or 60 minutes of running every second day.

#2 Counseling

For mild to moderate depression, it is recommended to try computerized cognitive behavioral therapy.

#3 Good Sleeping Habits

People who are deprived of sleep have a higher risk of getting depressed, according to a 2007 study. Aim for 7 hours of sleep per night.

#4 Quit Smoking

Smoking tobacco (and second-hand smoking) has long been associated with depression. Interestingly, individuals who are depression-prone are more likely to start smoking.

#5 Nutrition

Serious and suicidal depression may be caused by a deficiency in magnesium, according to a 2006 study issued in the Medical Hypothesis in 2006. Foods rich in magnesium include – soybeans, navy beans, broccoli, red kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas, almonds, walnuts, cauliflower, spinach, tamarind, prunes, apricots, and figs.

Image credit – Shutterstock & Getty

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