Amitriptyline – General Dosage to treat depression

Amitriptyline is used to manage symptoms of depression. It can prove to be an effective antidepressant if taken in right dosages and as per your doctor’s directions. Let us have a look at general dosage information of Amitriptyline used to symptoms of depression.

For Depression- Normal Adult Dose

Normal dose

75 mg to be taken orally in split doses. This can go up to maximum dose of 150mg/day if required.

Alternate dose

40-100mg to be taken orally as a single dose while going to bed, this can be increased from 25-50mg as required at bedtime to a maximum dose of 150mg/day.

Maximum dose

150 mg to be taken orally per day


Initial dose

75 mg/day- taken orally

Maintenance dose

40-100mg to be taken orally as a single dose while going to bed

Maximum dose

300mg to be taken orally per day

Note: Dosage needs to be reduced to lowest possible amount that can help manage relief of depression symptoms, when satisfactory results are attained.

Increment in dosage should be made late in the afternoon or during bedtime because of its sedative effect.

The complete healing effect can take minimum 30 days to progress.

Maintenance therapy should be carried out for three months or more to reduce the possibility of failure.

Normal Geriatric dose – depression

10mg to be taken orally –thrice a day with 20mg while going to bed

Note: The complete healing effect can take minimum 30 days to progress. Elderly patients need to be monitored very carefully. Dose adjustments can be made as per the clinical response.

Normal paediatric dose – depression

12 years and above

10mg – to be taken orally thrice a day with 20mg while going to bed

Amitriptyline – Overdose treatment

Deaths can occur from Amitriptyline over dosage. Some of the overdose symptoms are as follows

  1. Lungs and Airways- laboured or slow breathing
  2. Kidneys and Bladder- Unable to urinate, weak urine flow
  3.  blurred vision
  4. dry mouth
  5. irregular heart beat
  6. shock

In case of overdose, call nearest poison control centre immediately. In an emergency room, the patient can be treated with

  1. activated charcoal
  2. urine and blood tests
  3. Laxative
  4. Chest X-ray
  5. EKG
  6. Fluids via vein
  7. Gastric lavage
  8. medicine known as antidote to reduce the effects of poison and treat related symptoms

Amitriptyline overdose can be quite serious. People who consume this drug in excess need immediate hospitalization.

How well a person responds to the overdose treatment depends on the amount of drug swallowed and how soon a person receives treatment. There are better chances of speedy recovery if the person gets immediate medical help. Complications like pneumonia, brain damage due to lack of oxygen, muscle damage and even death can occur.

The first thing that should be done in case of an overdose is to call poison control centre or medical help. The patient should get immediate treatment so that the poison is flushed out from the body soon before its effects are accelerated.

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