Hydroxyzine With Buspar And Effexor Interactions

It's always a good idea to ask your doctor or pharmacist about potential drug interactions!

Aug 10, 2018

Nik asked

Can I take hydroxyzine with Buspar and Effexor?

At a glance

  • There are several interactions to be aware of between Buspar, Effexor and Hydroxyzine.
  • Taking Buspar with Effexor increases the risk of a rare, but serious condition known as serotonin syndrome.
  • Buspar with hydroxyzine can increase sedative effects.
  • Hydroxyzine with Effexor can increase the risk of cardiac arrhythmias.


Meds In Spoon

There are a few potential interactions between these drugs (hydroxyzine, Buspar and Effexor) and we will detail each below.

Buspar With Effexor Interaction

Perhaps the most significant potential interaction is between Buspar (buspirone) and Effexor (venlafaxine). Both drugs can increase levels of the neurotransmitter serotonin, which increases the risk of a rare, but serious condition known as serotonin syndrome. Serotonin syndrome is characterized by symptoms of:

  • Hyperthermia (elevated body temperature)
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Myoclonus (muscle spasms)
  • Rigidity
  • Mental status changes (e.g. delirium, agitation)
  • Death (in rare cases)

If any of the above symptoms occur while taking multiple serotonergic drugs (i.e. drugs that affect serotonin), it is important to discontinue them and seek appropriate medical treatment.

The overall risk of serotonin syndrome is relatively low for most individuals, even when taking multiple serotonergic drugs. Most commonly, there are additional factors at play, including consuming doses above the recommended levels and age.

Nevertheless, as serotonin syndrome is a serious medical condition, it is important to be aware of its existence and associated symptoms.

Hydroxyzine With Effexor

Both hydroxyzine and Effexor (venlafaxine) can cause QT prolongation. This increases the risk arrhythmia and a specific type of tachycardia known as torsades de pointes.

The overall risk of QT prolongation with hydroxyzine and Effexor isn't well known but, as a general guideline, drugs with a possible risk for it should be used cautiously and under the supervising of your doctor. This is especially true for individuals that may be more susceptible to adverse effects, such in those with a history of cardiac disease.

Buspar With Hydroxyzine

Both Buspar and hydroxyzine have a relatively high incidence of sedation and drowsiness. Use of both together can cause additive side effects, such as increased sedation.

It is important to not drive or operate machinery until you know how the drugs will affect you. The sedative effects of the drugs tend to decrease with prolonged use, but can still make you feel more tired than usual.

Final Words

There are several potential interactions between all of the drugs listed above. However, it is important to know there are several factors that go into deciding optimal drug therapy for an individual, including balancing the benefits with the potential risks.

If you are concerned about how any drug you are taking may affect you, speak with your doctor as they have your complete medical history.

  1. Vistaril Prescribing Information. Pfizer
  2. Drug-induced torsade de pointes: from molecular biology to bedside. PubMed
  3. The Serotonin Syndrome. NEJM
  4. Effexor XR Prescribing Information. AccessFDA
  5. Buspar Prescribing Information. AccessFDA

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