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Imipramine is in the class of medications called tricyclic antidepressants. This is used for the treatment of depression. Using this medication to treat depression may improve your sleep, mood, energy levels, and appetite. This might help you restore your interest in daily living as well. Imipramine restores the balance of certain natural substances in the brain. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has already approved this prescription.

Depression is classified as a mood disorder and may be described as feelings of loss, sadness, or anger that interfere with a person’s everyday activities. People experience depression in different ways; 

1. Daily work which results in lost time and lower productivity

2. Relationships

3. Chronic health problems 

It’s important to realize that feeling down at times is a normal part of life. Being upset or sad happens to everyone. But, if you’re feeling hopeless or down regularly, you could be dealing with depression. This type of condition is considered a serious medical condition that can get worse without proper treatment. Depression can be more than a constant state of sadness or feeling blue. The symptoms of depression can be experienced differently among men, women, and children. Signs and symptoms may include:

  • Aggressiveness, anger, anxiousness
  • Loss of interest, withdrawing from social engagements
  • Feeling sad, empty, hopeless
  • Thoughts of suicide 
  • Thinking or talking more slowly
  • Decreased energy, sleeping too much, waking up early
  • Greater fatigue, increased cramps, changes in appetite
  • Weights changes, headache, aches or pain 
  • Reduced sexual desire, inability to concentrate
  • Delayed responses during conversations 
  • Drinking excessively or engaging in high-risk activities 

There are lots of things people can do to help decrease the symptoms of depression. For several people, consistent exercise benefits a positive feeling and improves mood. Eating a healthy diet, having enough quality sleep regularly, and avoiding alcohol can also help lessen symptoms of depression. 

Imipramine may also be used for the treatment of bedwetting. It usually happens in children for 6 six years and over. This is used when other treatments haven’t been effective. 

How does the medicine work?

Imipramine enhances the activity of neurotransmitters called noradrenaline and serotonin in the brain. Neurotransmitters are a natural body chemical that acts as chemical messengers between the nerve cells. Noradrenaline and serotonin are known to be involved in regulating behavior, mood, and emotions. In depression, less noradrenaline and serotonin than normal is released from nerve cells in the brain. This medication prolongs the effects of noradrenaline and serotonin that have been released in the brain. Over time, this helps to lighten the mood and relieve depression. 

In bedwetting, Imipramine blocks receptors called cholinergic or muscarinic receptors. These are found on the surface of muscle cells in the bladder wall. This helps the muscle in the bladder wall to relax which decreases unstable and involuntary contractions of the bladder. It increases the capacity of the bladder to hold urine and lessens the need to pass urine. Imipramine, therefore, can help the child stay dry at night. 

How to use the medication?

This medication is to be taken by mouth usually 1 to 4 times a day. You may take each dose with or without a meal or as directed by your doctor. The dosage will depend on your medical condition and response to the treatment. In children, the dosage will also base on their body weight. Your doctor may start you at a low dose and gradually increase it. 

When used in children for bed-wetting, this medication should be taken one hour before bedtime. If your child usually wets the bed early in the night, the medicine may be given earlier in separate doses. When used for an extended period in children for bed-wetting, this medication may not work as well and may require different dosing. If this drug stops functioning well, call your doctor right away. 

Imipramine does not work right away. It may take up to 3 weeks before you experience the full benefits if you are taking this for depression. It is important to continue taking this medication even if you feel well. Some conditions may worsen when the drug is abruptly stopped. Follow the instructions of your doctor carefully. Do not take more or less medication or take it more frequently than the prescription. Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, use it at the same time and in the same way each day.

Common and Serious Side Effects

  • Ringing in your ears
  • Breast swelling
  • Lack of coordination
  • Weakness
  • Tingly feeling
  • Increased sweating 
  • Weight gain or loss 
  • Stomach cramps
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Headache
  • Blurred vision
  • Dry mouth 
  • Impotence or difficulty having an orgasm 

If these occur, call your doctor right away:

  • Seizures
  • Painful or difficult urination
  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • Problems with balance, speech, or vision 
  • Sudden weakness or numbness 
  • New or worsening chest pain
  • Yellowing of eyes or skin 
  • Dark urine
  • Severe stomach or abdominal pain 
  • Easy bruising or bleeding 
  • Unusual bleeding of rectum, nose, vagina, or mouth 


  • Imipramine may cause dizziness, drowsiness, or blurred vision that may reduce your ability to drive. Do not drive if affected until you know how this drug affects you. 
  • Avoid drinking alcohol while having this treatment. It will make you more likely to feel dizzy, sleepy, or confused.
  • Imipramine can cause a dry mouth that may increase the risk of tooth decay. It is important to practice good oral hygiene and visit your dentist regularly for check-ups. 
  • This prescription is not recommended for use in people with severe liver disease, irregular heartbeats, a manic phase of bipolar disorder, closed-angle glaucoma, and rare hereditary blood disorders called porphyrias. 
  • This should be carefully used in people with heart disease, low blood pressure, hyperthyroidism, chronic constipation, diabetes, epilepsy, schizophrenia, and glaucoma. 
  • If you are a pregnant or breastfeeding women, consult your doctor first before taking a dose of Imipramine. 
  • Let your doctor know if you have any allergies or if you ever had an allergic reaction to this drug.