Viibryd: A Different Type of Depression Drug

In this article...
  • Viibryd changes the way antidepressants work with chemicals in the brain to improve mood symptoms. Learn more about this new type of prescription drug.

Viibryd is a prescription drug used to treat the symptoms of major depressive disorder (MDD) and anxiety. It's prescribed as a 40 mg tablet and does not come as a generic version.

How Does Viibryd Work?

Viibryd increases the number of neurotransmitters called norepinephrine and serotonin in the brain. Without enough of these chemicals, which help regulate mood and anxiety, symptoms associated with MDD and other mental health concerns can occur. 

How Do I Take Viibryd?

When you first start taking Viibryd, slowly increase the dose according to your healthcare provider's instructions. Usually, that involves taking 10 mg of the drug each day for a week, 20 mg for a week, and finally increasing to the 40 mg dose. Starting off with the full dose of the drug can increase the risk of side effects.

How Is Viibryd Different From Other Antidepressants?

While most antidepressants work by preventing the reuptake of neurotransmitters by the brain, Viibryd is the only medication currently available that targets depression symptoms by increasing uptake of neurotransmitters. In other words, rather than simply preventing the brain from "cleaning up" unused serotonin and norepinephrine, Viibryd encourages the nervous system to produce more of these mood-enhancing chemicals.

Does Viibryd Cause Side Effects?

You should take Viibryd with food to avoid an upset stomach. If the drug causes sleep disturbances, you can take the tablet at breakfast. 

Some teens and young adults have reported suicidal thoughts while taking this medication. Talk to your doctor immediately if you have panic attacks, experience worsening depression or think about harming yourself while on Viibryd.

Does Medicare Cover Viibryd? 

If you have a Medicare Part D or Advantage plan, your plan might cover Viibryd after you meet your required deductible (no more than $480 in 2022). Check the drug list, or formulary, included with your plan materials to see whether it includes this medication.

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