Amoxapine is used in the treatment of major depressive disorder. Compared to other antidepressants it is believed to have a faster onset of action, with therapeutic effects seen within four to seven days. In excess of 80% of patients that do respond to amoxapine are reported to respond within two weeks of the beginning of treatment. It also has properties similar to those of the atypical antipsychotics, and may behave as one and may be used in the treatment of schizophrenia off-label. Despite its apparent lack of extrapyramidal side effects in patients with schizophrenia it has been found to exacerbate motor symptoms in patients with Parkinson's disease and psychosis.
As with all FDA-approved antidepressants it carries a black-box warning about the potential of an increase in suicidal thoughts or behaviour in children, adolescents and young adults under the age of 25. Its use is also advised against in individuals with known hypersensitivities to either amoxapine or other ingredients in its oral formulations. Its use is also recommended against in the following disease states:
Severe cardiovascular disorders (potential of cardiotoxic adverse effects such as QT interval prolongation)
Agranulocytosis a drop in white blood cell counts. The white blood cells are the cells of the immune system that fight off foreign invaders. Hence agranulocytosis leaves an individual open to life-threatening infections.
Leukopaenia the same as agranulocytosis but less severe.
Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (a potentially fatal reaction to antidopaminergic agents, most often antipsychotics. It is characterised by hyperthermia, diarrhoea, tachycardia, mental status changes [e.g. confusion], rigidity, extrapyramidal side effects)
Tardive dyskinesia a most often irreversible neurologic reaction to antidopaminergic treatment, characterised by involuntary movements of facial muscles, tongue, lips, and other muscles. It develops most often only after prolonged (months, years or even decades) exposure to antidopaminergics.
Thrombocytopenia a significant drop in platelet count that leaves one open to life-threatening bleeds.
Eosinophilia an elevated level of the eosinophils of the body. Eosinophils are the type of immune cell that's job is to fight off parasitic invaders.
Jaundice yellowing of the skin, eyes and mucous membranes due to an impaired ability of the body to clear the by product of haem breakdown, bilirubin, most often the result of liver damage as it is the liver's responsibility to clear bilirubin.
It is considered particularly toxic in overdose, with a high rate of renal failure (which usually takes 2–5 days), rhabdomyolysis, coma, seizures and even status epilepticus. Some believe it to be less cardiotoxic than other TCAs in overdose, although reports of cardiotoxic overdoses have been made.
- t1/2 is the elimination half life of the compound.
- tmax is the time to peak plasma levels after oral administration of amoxapine.
- CSS is the steady state plasma concentration.
- protein binding is the extent of plasma protein binding.
- Vd is the volume of distribution of the compound.
Society and culture
Brand names for amoxapine include (where † denotes discontinued brands):
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^Roth BL, Driscol J. "PDSP Ki Database". Psychoactive Drug Screening Program (PDSP). University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the United States National Institute of Mental Health. Retrieved 14 August 2017.
^ abcdTatsumi M, Groshan K, Blakely RD, Richelson E (December 1997). "Pharmacological profile of antidepressants and related compounds at human monoamine transporters". European Journal of Pharmacology. 340 (2–3): 249–258. doi:10.1016/s0014-2999(97)01393-9. PMID9537821.
^ abcdeRoth BL, Craigo SC, Choudhary MS, Uluer A, Monsma FJ, Shen Y, et al. (March 1994). "Binding of typical and atypical antipsychotic agents to 5-hydroxytryptamine-6 and 5-hydroxytryptamine-7 receptors". The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics. 268 (3): 1403–1410. PMID7908055.
^ abcdefghijRichelson E, Nelson A (July 1984). "Antagonism by antidepressants of neurotransmitter receptors of normal human brain in vitro". The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics. 230 (1): 94–102. PMID6086881.
^ abcBurstein ES, Ma J, Wong S, Gao Y, Pham E, Knapp AE, et al. (December 2005). "Intrinsic efficacy of antipsychotics at human D2, D3, and D4 dopamine receptors: identification of the clozapine metabolite N-desmethylclozapine as a D2/D3 partial agonist". The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics. 315 (3): 1278–1287. doi:10.1124/jpet.105.092155. PMID16135699. S2CID2247093.
^ abcAppl H, Holzammer T, Dove S, Haen E, Strasser A, Seifert R (February 2012). "Interactions of recombinant human histamine H₁R, H₂R, H₃R, and H₄R receptors with 34 antidepressants and antipsychotics". Naunyn-Schmiedeberg's Archives of Pharmacology. 385 (2): 145–170. doi:10.1007/s00210-011-0704-0. PMID22033803. S2CID253747520.
^ abPälvimäki EP, Roth BL, Majasuo H, Laakso A, Kuoppamäki M, Syvälahti E, Hietala J (August 1996). "Interactions of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors with the serotonin 5-HT2c receptor". Psychopharmacology. 126 (3): 234–240. doi:10.1007/BF02246453. PMID8876023. S2CID24889381.
^ abcGozlan H, Saddiki-Traki F, Merahi N, Laguzzi R, Hamon M (December 1991). "[Preclinical pharmacology of amoxapine and amitriptyline. Implications of serotoninergic and opiodergic systems in their central effect in rats]". L'Encéphale (in French). 17 Spec No 3: 415–422. PMID1666997.
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