Can You Crush Trazodone Pills?

If the tablets are the immediate-release version, yes, they can be crushed.

Question

Can Trazodone be crushed? Thanks for your help!

Asked by Marie On Jul 21, 2022

Answered by
Medical Content Reviewed By HelloPharmacist Staff

Published Jul 21, 2022
Last updated Jul 21, 2022

Key points

  • Immediate release trazodone tablets can safely be cut, crushed, or split.

Answer

Thanks for reaching out!

Trazodone, an oral antidepressant, comes in different formulations, some of which can be crushed.

All immediate-release trazodone products (brand name Desyrel) can safely be cut, split, and crushed. In fact, many of the generic trazodone tablets are scored to ease splitting.

Trazodone is also available in an extended-release formulation (brand name Oleptro). Oleptro (extended-release trazodone) cannot be crushed or chewed. Doing so will ruin the extended-release mechanism of the tablet. This could potentially release the entire dose at once, increasing the risk of side effects.

It is important to note that Oleptro can be split once and the tablets are scored to assist in doing so if you need to take half-tablets. In general, it is uncommon for extended-release tablets to be able to be cut, but based on how the tablets are formulated, Oleptra can be split once if necessary (just not crushed or chewed).

To summarize:

  • Immediate release trazodone tablets can safely be cut, crushed or split.
  • Extended-release trazodone tablets (Oleptro) cannot be crushed but can be split one time.

Below is some additional information regarding trazodone.

What Is Trazodone?

Trazodone is an oral antidepressant medication, unrelated to other antidepressant medication classes. Trazodone is indicated for the treatment of a variety of conditions, including:

  • Major depression
  • Generalized anxiety disorder (off label)
  • Panic disorder (off label)
  • Insomnia (off label)

In addition to its antidepressant properties, trazodone is known to have anti-anxiety effects, which is why it is often used for anxiety disorders and insomnia.

Administration recommendations vary depending on the formulation of trazodone you are taking:

Immediate-release tablets:

  • Take one dose after a meal or snack to decrease the incidence of nausea. Taking on an empty stomach can also increase the risk of lightheadedness or dizziness.
  • If drowsiness occurs, take a larger portion of your daily dose at bedtime.

Extended-release tablets (Oleptro):

  • Take one dose at the same time every day in the late evening or at bedtime, on an empty stomach.
  • Oleptro tablets should not be crushed or chewed. Tablets may be broken in half one time along the score-line

References

  • Trazodone for Insomnia: A Systematic Review, PubMed
  • Oleptro Prescribing Information, AccessFDA
  • Trazodone Prescribing Information, AccessFDA

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