Does amitriptyline cause weight gain?

    Like all medicines, Amitriptyline can cause side effects, and the one that people often are most concerned about is potential weight gain. In this article, we will take a look at whether or not the medication can actually cause weight gain, as well as what it is, and what the side effects of the medication are. We will also discuss whether or not you need to consult with your doctor before you use the medication, how you can purchase the medication, and other frequently asked questions regarding Amitriptyline. 

    A pair of feet stood on a weighing scale to check their body weight

    What is amitriptyline?

    Amitriptyline is a medication that, according to the NHS, is primarily prescribed for alleviating pain, particularly nerve pain (neuralgia) and preventing migraines. It is classed as a prescription-only medication, which means that it is only available through prescription. It comes in a number of forms, the most common of which is tablets. While it's known for its pain-relieving properties, it's crucial to note that amitriptyline can also be used in treating depression. The dosage prescribed for pain management differs from that used for depression. It's essential to understand that taking amitriptyline for pain relief won't provide the same effects as using it to address depression.

    What is weight gain?

    Weight gain refers to an increase in body weight, typically resulting from consuming more calories than you are burning. While the fundamental cause is often an imbalance between calorie intake and output, a number of factors can contribute to weight gain. Factors include consuming excessive calories, consuming the wrong types of food, certain medical conditions or medications, genetics, stress, inadequate sleep, and age-related changes in metabolism (Mendis & Wiggins, 2023).

    What are the common side effects of amitriptyline?

    As with all other medications, some people may experience certain side effects when they are using amitriptyline. Some side effects are more common than others, and some are more severe than others. The NHS states that the most common side effects of amitriptyline include: 

    • Constipation

    • Feeling dizzy

    • Dry mouth

    • Feeling sleepy or tired

    • Difficulty peeing

    • Headache

    If you are struggling with any of the above side effects, if they are persistent, or if they are particularly bad, you may wish to consult with your healthcare provider for advice about using the medication.

    Does amitriptyline cause weight gain?

    The NHS says that amitriptyline can influence your appetite. Some people may find that they are hungrier when they are using the medication, whereas others may feel that their appetite is diminished. A 1983 study found that people taking amitriptyline and other medications gained around 1.3-2.9 lbs/month, however, as mentioned appetite can go either way in people using amitriptyline (Berken et al, 1984)

    This is particularly true when the medication is being used as an antidepressant. Amitriptyline is among the most common antidepressants that can potentially cause weight gain, alongside imipramine (Tofranil) and doxepin (Hall-Flavin, 2018). Harvard University also states that as well as these, citalopram, mirtazapine, nortriptyline, trimipramine, paroxetine, and phenelzine are also antidepressants that could cause weight gain (Anekwe, 2022).

    Should you speak to a doctor if you experience changes in weight when taking amitriptyline?

    Yes, it's essential to speak to a doctor if you notice changes in your weight while taking amitriptyline. Weight changes, whether an increase or decrease, can be significant indicators of how your body is responding to the medication. Your doctor can assess the situation, consider any other factors that may be contributing to the weight changes, and adjust your treatment plan accordingly to ensure your overall health and well-being are maintained.

    Can you buy amitriptyline online?

    Yes, amitriptyline is available to purchase online from EU Meds. At EU Meds, you can purchase a number of neuropathic pain medications, such as amitriptyline, online which are delivered directly to your door. To purchase amitriptyline online from EU Meds you will need to complete our free online consultation that checks you are suitable to purchase and use the medication. Once completed, you will be given a free private prescription that allows you to complete your purchase. Other neuropathic medications that you can purchase from EU Meds include Duloxetine and Carbamazepine.


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