How long does mirtazapine stay in your system? 

As a BetterHelp affiliate, we may receive compensation from BetterHelp if you purchase products or services through the links provided

In this blog post, we are going to answer the question, “How long does mirtazapine stay in your system?”. Mirtazapine is an antidepressant which is used to treat a number of mental health related problems. This blog will also cover why and how this antidepressant is used. 

How long does mirtazapine stay in your system?

Mirtazapine stays in your system for around 4-8 days. This antidepressant has a half life of about 20-40 hours. It means that the concentration of the drug is reduced to half after this time period. The remaining amount is further reduced to half in the next 20-40 hours. 

This process keeps on going until the drug is completely washed out from your body and it can take upto 4-8 days for the process to happen. However, this time duration can vary from person to person. 

Some people have some underlying diseases that may affect the entire process of drug metabolism. Usually, in order for a med to be metabolised, it has to go through some steps. 

When you ingest the tablet, it goes into your stomach and goes through the process of dissolution where the drug is dissolved. It is then absorbed into the systemic circulation (blood) which takes it to the respective active site. 

This blood also carries the drug to the kliver, a detoxifying organ in our body. Liver has an entire enzyme system which is responsible for breaking down the drug into its metabolites. These metabolites are then eliminated from the body. 

Now, you can imagine how many processes take place just for a single tablet to be excreted out of your body. Several people have conditions that can affect one or more of these pathways. 

If the absorption of the drug is hindered in some individuals, it will obviously take longer for such people to get the drug out of their system. Some people have compromised liver and kidney functions which makes this process even longer. 

This indicates that the time taken by mirtazapine to be completely removed from your body depends on your physiology or any underlying disease you might have. 

What is mirtazapine and why is it prescribed?

Mirtazapine (Brand name: Remeron) is an antidepressant. It does not belong to any typical class of antidepressants and its mechanism of action is different from SSRIs and SNRIs. It does not block the reuptake of serotonin by any pathway. 

Mirtazapine (Remeron) belongs to the tetracyclic antidepressants. It has a dual mode of action. Mirtazapine is believed to be responsible for the activation of 5-HT1 receptors, which are one of the serotonin receptors. This antidepressant also acts on the noradrenergic system. 

Experts believe that remeron enhances the stimulatory action of the noradrenergic system which increases the secretion of serotonin. It also prevents the inhibitory action of the noradrenergic system which hinders the release of serotonin. 

This way, it actively increases the amount of this excitatory neurotransmitter in your system. This medication is used for the treatment of following health conditions:

Depression 

Mirtazapine is used in the treatment of mild to major depression disorder (MDD). It is a state of mind which is concerned with disturbing thoughts, especially about one’s self. 

It is associated with symptoms like hopelessness, tearfulness and emptiness. Depression is caused by the deficiency of excitatory neurotransmitters. 

Mirtazapine increases the amount of active serotonin to help relieve the symptoms of depression. Serotonin is an excitatory neurotransmitter responsible for modulating mood, cognition, reward, learning, memory, and various other psychological processes. 

Anxiety 

Mirtazapine is also used to treat generalised anxiety disorder. As the name implies, this mental health condition is associated with general worry or anxiety about pretty much everything without having any logical reason. 

People suffering from GAD worry about small matters related to family, friends, relationships, study, work, health, wealth etc. 

Treatment resistant depression 

Treatment resistant depression is the kind of depression that does not go away after typical antidepressant treatment. Experts believe that mirtazapine is a good option to treat depression that has been resistant to normal SSRI or SNRI treatment. 

Depression in elderly patients

Mirtazapine has been a good antidepressant to treat depression and the disturbing symptoms associated with it in geriatric population. The drug seems to control mood problems quite well in such patients. 

Post-operative nausea

Mirtazapine can also be used to help control nausea that usually becomes a problem after operative procedures. 

Alcohol dependence

Mirtazapine can also be used to control alcohol dependence or alcoholism. Its mode of action in this case is still a topic of research and so is its safety and efficacy. However, it is not recommended to take mirtazapine with alcohol as the two don’t pair that well together. 

Insomnia or inability to fall asleep 

Mirtazapine can significantly help improve your sleep cycle by providing relief in the disturbances that might occur when you try to fall asleep. It also increases the duration of your sleep and reduces the frequency of nighttime wakefulness, especially in people who have insomnia comorbid with depression. 

Neuropathic pain

Mirtazapine can also be used for neuropathic pain. The med can significantly reduce the intensity of this throbbing kind of pain and increase the frequency of pain-free episodes. 

Inability to feel hungry/hunger suppression

Mirtazapine can be used to boost appetite in people who are not always hungry. Several studies revealed that mirtazapine can significantly help people with anorexia nervosa. However, when the drug is solely used for the treatment of depression, it may make you gain weight as a side effect. 

Is mirtazapine associated with side effects?

Yes, like every other medication on this planet, mirtazapine is also associated with some side effects. The common side effects include:

  • Sleepiness or drowsiness 
  • Excessive tiredness or fatigue 
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness 
  • Xerostomia or dry mouth 
  • Anxiety 
  • Agitation 
  • Confusion 
  • Gain of appetite
  • Weight gain 
  • Gastrointestinal side effects including nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea/Constipation 

Mirtazapine is also associated with some serious side effects, which may include:

  • Allergic reaction associated with symptoms like redness of skin, itching, burning sensation, blisters, blue-purple patches, tightness of chest, wheezing, difficulty in breathing, hoarseness etc. 
  • Convulsions 
  • QT prolongation 
  • Pain and tightness in chest
  • Arrhythmia 
  • Flu like symptoms 

These side effects can vary from person to person. People who are on higher doses are more susceptible to these side effects. Report any problems with bleeding or bruising to your doctor. 

If you see any unexplained blisters or rashes on your body, or experience any problems with urination, or if you feel changes in your vision, immediately report to your healthcare provider. 

Mirtazapine come with a suicidal warning in people younger than 24 years of age. If you have someone who shows suicidal behavior or you see hopelessness in them, make sure you keep an eye on them and get medical attention as soon as you can. 

Do not stop this med abruptly. If it’s time for you to stop mirtazapine, your doctor will simply make a taper schedule for you, which should be followed vigilantly if you wish to keep withdrawal symptoms at bay. 

In case of overdose, immediately reach out to the hospital. Make sure you properly guide them about how much drug you have taken and when.

If you have missed a dose and you’re way past the usual time at which you take your med, do not take it. It will cause you to overdose when you take your next dose, which is not too far away. 

It’s better to skip the missed dose and take the next one. If you remember your missed dose earlier, it’s safe for you to take it. Antidepressants are not that simple when it comes to missing a dose. 

Conclusion

In this blog post, we have discussed how long mirtazapine can stay in your body. We have learned that it stays in your system for around 4-8 days. This antidepressant has a half life of about 20-40 hours. It means that the concentration of the drug is reduced to half after this time period. 

The remaining amount is further reduced to half in the next 20-40 hours. This process keeps on ongoing until the drug is completely washed out from your body and it can take upto 4-8 days for the process to happen. However, this time duration can vary from person to person.

Make sure you use this medication or any other medication only when your doctor has advised it. Using medications which can affect your brain is not something ideal and should not be encouraged unless it is absolutely necessary to do so. 

FAQs: how long does mirtazapine stay in your system

How long does it take mirtazapine to get out of your system?

Mirtazapine stays in your system for around 4-8 days. This antidepressant has a half life of about 20-40 hours. It means that the concentration of the drug is reduced to half after this time period. The remaining amount is further reduced to half in the next 20-40 hours. 

This process keeps on ongoing until the drug is completely washed out from your body and it can take upto 4-8 days for the process to happen. However, this time duration can vary from person to person. Some people have some underlying diseases that may affect the entire process of drug metabolism

What happens if you stop taking mirtazapine?

Abrupt withdrawal of mirtazapine leads to withdrawal or discontinuation syndrome. When you start taking antidepressant, it increases the amount of serotonin in your body. 

Over time, your body gets used to this increased amount of serotonin. When you suddenly stop using it, it creates an unannounced serotonin deficiency, to which your body reacts in a negative way. You may suffer from the following symptoms:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Nightmares
  • Excessive dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Delirium
  • Emotional stress
  • Impaired motor coordination
  • Intrusive thoughts

Is it hard to withdraw from mirtazapine?

Yes, mirtazapine withdrawal can be hard. mirtazapine alters the amounts of excitatory chemicals in your brain, both serotonin and norepinephrine. 

Now, if you take away such meds rapidly, the availability of serotonin and norepinephrine reduces. This results in the receptors craving these excitatory neurotransmitters as they have been receiving them for quite a while now, and you start experiencing withdrawal symptoms. 

This deficiency is responsible for producing withdrawal symptoms. In order to prevent such a situation, your healthcare provider simply just reduces the dose of your antidepressant.

How long does it take for mirtazapine to leave your system?

Mirtazapine is a long acting antidepressant with a half life of about 20-40 hours. It means that the concentration of the drug is reduced to half after this time period. The remaining amount is further reduced to half in the next  20-40 hours. This process keeps on ongoing until the drug is completely washed out from your body. 

How long does it take to feel normal after stopping mirtazapine?

The time taken by your body to completely adjust without mirtazapine depends on your physiology. There is no standard time duration for this and it hugely varies from person to person. Some people start to get better in just a few weeks, while others may take 6 to 7 months to feel completely normal again. 

References 

What was missing from this post which could have made it better?

[Sassy_Social_Share type="standard"]