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Comparison of Desvenlafaxine and Venlafaxine Ingestions Reported to Texas Poison Centers

Mathias B Forrester and C Lizette Villarreal

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Background: Desvenlafaxine is the major active metabolite of the serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor venlafaxine and is prescribed for the treatment of major depressive disorder.

Objective: To compare desvenlafaxine and venlafaxine ingestions reported to a statewide poison center system.

Methods: Cases included all desvenlafaxine and venlafaxine ingestions reported to Texas poison centers during 2008-2009. The distribution of all cases by selected demographic factors was identified. After cases that involved coingestants and/or were not followed to a final medical outcome were excluded, the distribution of the remaining cases by clinical and management factors was determined.

Results: There were 144 desvenlafaxine and 777 venlafaxine ingestions. The distribution of desvenlafaxine and venlafaxine ingestions was, respectively, female patients 61.8% versus 64.2%, age 0-5 years 31.9% versus 19.3%, unintentional 47.2% versus 39.8%, and involving no coingestants 56.3% versus 46.7%. There were no coingestants and the medical outcome was known for 47 desvenlafaxine and 208 venlafaxine cases. The distribution of this subset of ingestions was, respectively, managed on site 40.4% versus 24.0%, already at or en route to a health-care facility 36.2% versus 52.9%, and referred to a health-care facility 23.4% versus 23.1%. The medical outcome was no effect 72.3% versus 56.3%, minor 14.9% versus 26.4%, moderate 10.6% versus 14.9%, and major 2.1% versus 2.4% for desvenlafaxine and venlafaxine, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS: The patterns of desvenlafaxine and venlafaxine ingestions were generally similar. However, desvenlafaxine ingestions were more likely to involve young children, be unintentional, not involve coingestants, be managed on site, and involve no effect.

J Pharm Technol 2011;27:35-40

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