Anxiety Home > What Is Clomipramine Used For?
Some people may wonder, "What is clomipramine used for?" Clomipramine is used to treat obsessive-compulsive disorder in adults, teenagers, and children by affecting certain chemicals in the brain, including serotonin and norepinephrine. Although it is not entirely clear as to how clomipramine works, it is thought that perhaps the medication allows these chemicals to stay in the brain longer, which can help alleviate the symptoms of OCD.
What Is Clomipramine Used For?Clomipramine hydrochloride (Anafranil®) has been licensed for the treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in adults, teens, and children.
People with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) suffer intensely from recurrent, unwanted thoughts (obsessions) or rituals (compulsions) that they feel they cannot control. Rituals such as hand washing, counting, checking something, or cleaning are often performed with the hope of preventing obsessive thoughts or making them go away. Performing these rituals, however, provides only temporary relief, and not performing them greatly increases anxiety. The exact cause or causes of obsessive-compulsive disorder are not fully known at this time.
Clomipramine is approved for OCD treatment in children, teens, and adults. Although antidepressants, such as clomipramine, are effective for treating the symptoms of OCD, behavior therapy for OCD is often used along with medications. Ask your healthcare provider about behavior therapy for OCD.
How Clomipramine Works for OCDClomipramine belongs to a class of medications called tricyclic antidepressants. It is not entirely clear how clomipramine works. However, it is known that clomipramine does affect several chemicals in the brain, including serotonin and norepinephrine. It is thought that perhaps clomipramine allows these chemicals to stay in the brain longer, which can help with symptoms of OCD.
Even though clomipramine is classified as a tricyclic antidepressant (due the chemical structure of the molecule), it actually acts much like a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). SSRIs are a newer group of antidepressant medications, and many people consider clomipramine to be an SSRI, even though it is technically a tricyclic antidepressant.