In this blog post, we are going to answer the question, “What is the dosage of Quetiapine for depression?”. Quetiapine is an atypical antipsychotic medication which is primarily used in the treatment of bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.
However, it can also be used for the management and treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD) as an adjunct to antidepressant therapy.
This blog will cover all there is to know about the safety and efficacy of Quetiapine for the treatment of depression and what doses are preferred for that very purpose.
What is the dosage of Quetiapine for depression?
The initial treatment of Quetiapine for depression is started with a dose of 50 mg once a day along with an antidepressant. The dose can later be increased to 150-300 mg per day by the healthcare provider if there is no sign of an allergic reaction or any unusual side effect.
According to the safety guidelines, the dose should not exceed 300 mg per day in case of MDD. Quetiapine is an atypical antipsychotic medication. It is primarily used for the treatment of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
The drug can be used for other conditions as well, including autism, irritability and major depressive disorders. Its exact mechanism of action is still unknown.
However, experts believe that the drug acts as an agonist of some of the dopamine receptors including D2 receptors and some of the serotonin receptors including 5HT1A receptors.
The experts have also added that Quetiapine can inhibit serotonin 5HT2A receptors actively. As Quetiapine is an atypical antipsychotic, it is considered safer than typical antipsychotics which possess a higher risk of causing extrapyramidal side effects.
However, there are many research studies that have explained how Quetiapine can be used effectively in the management and treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD). However, it is considered best to pair it with an antidepressant for better and promising results.
This is because MDD is a persistent type of depression and it usually does not respond well to monotherapy. There must be at least two medications added to the treatment regimen of MDD. Make sure you don’t use any medication without your doctor’s approval.
There are a number of combinations when it comes to the treatment of MDD. Oftentimes, two antidepressants are combined together and Quetiapine or any other antipsychotic medication is not used at all.
What does research suggest?
There are several research studies and clinical trials that have been conducted to investigate the antidepressant effects of Quetiapine. One research review indicated that Quetiapine possesses antidepressant properties on its own and can significantly help manage your condition.
However, the study revealed that the medication was not found enough for the long-term management of MDD because of the complexity of this mental illness. Several other studies have indicated that Quetiapine works best when it is combined with an antidepressant.
Several research studies have investigated the effects produced by the combined use of SSRIs and Quetiapine. A 2015 study investigated Quetiapine augmentation in the management of major depressive disorder (MDD).
The study concluded that this has become a frequent practice in clinical settings and it provides promising results. This practice is more common in case of patients who do not respond properly to initial therapy with antidepressants.
Even the strongest of antidepressants may not be adequate for the treatment of persistent depression and augmentation by Quetiapine can significantly help recover such patients.
However, the study stated that more research is necessary to determine the exact and the most appropriate way of using Quetiapine and other atypical antipsychotics that can be used for the purpose of antidepressant augmentation.
The study also revealed that the use of Quetiapine itself can be beneficial in the treatment and management of MDD as the drug does possess some antidepressant properties.
There are other atypical antipsychotics as well that can be used for the purpose of augmentation, like Aripiprazole, but not every atypical antipsychotic can be used. Some can’t work well chemically with antidepressants.
One important thing to remember is that these meds should never be used without your doctor’s approval. Every human body is different and it reacts differently to medications. Quetiapine can also manage some of the activating side effects of antidepressants.
Antidepressants are known to cause side effects in the early course of their treatment. These side effects are pretty common and they occur irrespective of the initial dose. The most common ones are anxiety and sleep disturbances.
The concomitant use of Quetiapine can help control these side effects by enhancing your sleep cycle and reducing early antidepressant-induced anxiety. If we closely look at it, there are a lot of benefits of this combination and the two can significantly help people with major depressive disorder (MDD).
However, the only way to ensure a safe and effective therapeutic outcome is to use these meds properly. Improper usage and non-adjusted doses can not only result in therapeutic failure but can also exacerbate the symptoms associated with your MDD.
What to ensure the proper use of Quetiapine?
The best way to achieve the desired therapeutic outcome is to make sure you’re taking Quetiapine in the best possible way. It is important that you take all the necessary precautions with the drug that must be taken. There are some important warnings associated with Quetiapine.
It should never be taken by older adults, especially those who suffer from dementia. The drug can cause significant disturbances in their behaviour and may exacerbate the symptoms associated with their mental illness.
The treatment with Quetiapine also increases the risk of death in such patients. If we talk about the use of Quetiapine in people younger than 24 years of age, there are some complications that may arise. The drug can induce suicidal behaviour in such individuals.
The severity and intensity of this suicidal behaviour can vary from person to person and it also depends on the fact that the person is taking antidepressants along with Quetiapine or not.
People who were treated with the combined use of Quetiapine and antidepressants showed even more intense suicidal behaviour. This is because antidepressants are solely responsible for making younger people feel that way.
However, this effect was found to be more disastrous in teenagers. A lot of other disturbing behaviour patterns were also observed. As far as children younger than that are concerned, experts suggest that Quetiapine should not be used in children younger than 10 years of age.
Some studies indicated that even adults can show suicidal behaviours, especially during the early course of the treatment. They showed other symptoms as well, including:
- Insomnia or inability to fall asleep
- Reckless and violent behaviour
- Panic attacks
- Abnormal excitement
This is extremely important to make sure that people around you are aware of the dangerous side effects of Quetiapine. Oftentimes, people are unable to help themselves when they suffer from manic behaviour.
This is why your family or caregiver should know about the possibility of such side effects so that they can immediately take you to the doctor. It is also extremely important to make sure that you’re taking as much as you are supposed to.
Taking more than the prescribed dose can cause a number of other complications for you. If you don’t understand how much drug you’re supposed to take or how to take it, make sure you ask your doctor or pharmacist again and again until you completely understand the proper use of the drug.
Proper drug administration is the key to achieving your desired therapeutic outcome. You should also talk to your healthcare provider about the risk and dangers of missing your dose. When you know how important it is, you will try to take your meds more carefully. If you’re being treated for a psychological illness, skipping a dose can be dangerous.
In this blog post, we have discussed the use of Quetiapine for major depressive disorder and the doses with which the treatment is initiated. We have learned that the treatment is generally started with the dose of 50 mg once a day along with an antidepressant.
The dose can later be increased to 150-300 mg per day by the healthcare provider if there is no sign of an allergic reaction or any unusual side effect.
According to the safety guidelines, the dose should not exceed 300 mg per day in case of MDD. Always make sure you stick to your doctor’s recommended dose and don’t ever deviate from it.
FAQs: Quetiapine for depression dosage
Does quetiapine work for depression?
Yes, Quetiapine can be used for the treatment and management of depression. In the case of monotherapy, higher doses are required of Quetiapine to manage the symptoms actively. However, not everyone can bear these symptoms. This is why it is often paired with antidepressants. Quetiapine can also manage some of the activating side effects of antidepressants.
Is quetiapine good for anxiety and depression?
Yes, Quetiapine shows some good activity against depression and it can be used in combination with other antidepressants for the treatment and management of MDD. Proper drug administration is the key to achieving your desired therapeutic outcome. You should also talk to your healthcare provider about the risk and dangers of missing your dose.
What drugs should not be taken with quetiapine?
- Certain antibiotics including macrolides. Examples are clarithromycin, azithromycin, and erythromycin.
- Antidepressants, including selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. Examples are fluoxetine, sertraline, paroxetine, etc.
- Some antifungal agents like ketoconazole, itraconazole, fluconazole etc.
- Certain antiarrhythmic medications like quinidine
- Medications used to treat HIV, including ritonavir, indinavir, etc.
Which antidepressant is best with quetiapine?
Quetiapine can be paired with a number of antidepressants like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), dopamine-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (DNRI), etc. Only your healthcare provider can determine which combination holds the best therapeutic importance in your case. Make sure you always stick to your doctor’s advice and do not take anything that your healthcare provider does not approve of.
What does Seroquel do to a normal person?
Seroquel is an atypical antipsychotic medication. It is most commonly used for the treatment of bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Seroquel can also be used to treat and manage irritability, autism, and major depressive disorder (MDD). However, this medicine is also associated with some side effects and it may severely damage the mental health of a person who has no psychological illness.
- Ella J Daly and Madhukar H Trivedi – A review of quetiapine in combination with antidepressant therapy in patients with depression https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2656328/
- J M Goldstein. Drugs Today (Barc). (1999) – Quetiapine fumarate (Seroquel): a new atypical antipsychotic https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12973385/
- National Library of Medicine – Quetiapine https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a698019.html