Medication Monday: Brexanolone

I hope everyone had a safe and relaxing weekend, but we are once again back to Monday, and once again it is time for Medication Monday, the weekly series that offers a brief, informative introduction to mental health medications. This week, we are talking about brexanolone, which may also go by the brand name Zulresso.

Brexanolone is a medication approved for the treatment of postpartum depression. I’ve said before how every depression may impact people differently, well that is especially true when we are dealing with different kinds of depression, such as postpartum depression. Symptoms of postpartum depression include crying for no obvious reason, feeling sad, hopeless, empty, or overwhelmed; feeling overly anxious; difficulty sleeping, even if the baby is sleeping; oversleeping; unexpected anger; losing interest in activities that are otherwise enjoyable; unexplainable physical pains; difficulty concentrating; and feelings of self-harm or a desire to hurt the baby. And as a new parent, I can attest to the fact that some of these things, like being tired or difficulty concentrating, are normal. Yet when it progresses to the point it interferes with your life, it can be postpartum depression, and brexanolone acts on the brain to help address these problems.

Brexanolone, like most medications out there, does have potential side effects. Some of the possible side effects are dry mouth, flushing in the skin, passing out, or sleepiness. In rare situations, it can cause excessive sleepiness.

As always, Medicación Monday is not meant as a substitute for medical advice, so if you have concerns about brexanolone, you should bring them up with your health care provider. You should also be sure to tell your doctor about other medications, particularly other antidepressants you might be on. Your doctor needs this information to help them decide what medication might be best for you. Hopefully, the information presented in Medication Monday helps you be more informed when having these conversations with your doctor.

And as always, thanks for reading.

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