Tianeptine, aka Stablon or Salymbra, is a drug used for the treatment of major psychological disorders. In its chemical composition, It is a tricyclic antidepressant (TCA) and has different unique characteristics. It is an anti-depressive medicine, which works by releasing a special protein called BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factors) in our brain. The BDNF works by affecting our neural plasticity, which refers to the lasting changes in our mind throughout our life.

It works as an effective medication for the elderly and people suffering from alcohol withdrawal symptoms. According to recent studies, Tianeptine has pain-numbing properties and works as a painkiller in various treatments.  The best part about this drug is that unlike other psychotropic drugs, it does not have any adverse effects.

It was discovered and patented in the 1960s by the French Society of Medical Research. Due to this, France is one of the biggest manufacturer and exporter of the drug.

How the drug works

It works by enhancing the intake and absorption of serotonin. Serotonin is the ‘feel-good’ hormone that helps you feel calm and happy. The drug functions by triggering the reabsorption of serotonin in our nerve cells. Once a neuron of the brain fires and serotonin release gets triggered, the neurotransmitter departs from the nerve vesicle. It then enters into a synaptic cleft, binding itself to receptors of other different neurons in the brain. Tianeptine increases the reuptake of serotonin, so it gets freed from the synaptic cleft and gets stored in its original neuron vesicles.

It also increases the cellular concentration of dopamine in the neuron/nerve pathways of our brain. Dopamine is a potent mood-boosting agent and has profound effects on our temperament and mind. Stress is often associated with distorted neuroplasticity, which is a map of all that has happened in our life. Tianeptine alters the functioning of glutamate receptors of our brain. This leads to an opposite effect on the impaired neuroplasticity of the brain, which causes stress.

Since the drug alters the AMPA receptors of the glutamates, Tianeptine qualifies as an ampakine drug as well.

Said benefits of the drug

Tianeptine deals with depressive symptoms

  • It has proven effective in the treatment of patients suffering from major depression or a severe case of dysthymia.  It is observed that with a prolonged use of Tianeptine, the depressive symptoms can be prevented from relapsing or reoccurring.
  • In a study based on patients who have Parkinson’s disease, the drug helped reduce the severity of depression amongst the patients and also improved the quality of life in general.  
  • When tested on rats, Tianeptine was found to reduce drug-induced seizures, learning and memory impairments. This opened up a new door in the treatment of epilepsy.  
  • Tianeptine also tackles the depressive symptoms of postmenopausal women and withdrawing alcoholics quite effectively.

Tianeptine reduces depression by

  • Modulating the glutamate receptors of our brain.
  • Normalizing glutamate levels.
  • By reversing the increased secretion of glutamates in the amygdala.
  • Enhancing the serotonin re-uptake.
  • Increasing BDNF release in our brains.
  • Potentiating the brain’s dopamine receptors.
  • Increasing the pressure centered release of dopamine.
  • It increases the response level of our Alpha 1– adrenergic system, which is responsible for our stress levels.
  • Some studies even claim that it releases norepinephrine.

Tianeptine is effective against PTSD and anxieties.

  • Tianeptine reduces anxiety symptoms. It also addresses subjective and objective neurocognitive functions of the elderly who suffer from stress and anxiety disorders.
  • In patients with panic disorders, Tianeptine has been found to reduce the frequency and the patient’s reaction to panic challenges.
  • It helps in reducing morphine-induced respiratory depression.
  • A study showed how a dosage of Tianeptine effectively treated the anxiety of a rat suffering from a predator related PTSD condition.
  • It also helps in reducing the damage caused by our biomolecules due to stress.

Tianeptine helps reduce anxiety by

  • Altering the glutamate receptor activity affecting our neural plasticity.
  • Enhancing serotonin absorption
  • Regulating prefrontal cortical activity
  • Increasing GABA concentration in the spinal cord
  • Activating adenosine A-1 receptors.

Side effects of Tianeptine

Tianeptine addiction for recreational usage has been found to be very rare, with merely 141 cases being recorded in France between the years 1990 to 2004. Only one out of 1000 patients prescribed with Tianeptine was found to be addicted to the drug. However, like every drug out there, Tianeptine too comes with its own set of side effects and complications.

The side effects of Tianeptine are relatively mild and inconsiderable in comparison with other stress and anxiety reducing medications. It is usually considered safe for consumption since it is not addictive in the long run.

The most common side effects of Tianeptine include

  • Headache – Up to 18% of users have complained of mild headaches
  • Dizziness – Up to 10% of users complained of dizziness; however, this usually wore off after regular use
  • About 20% users complained of insomnia, and some of them also compared of nightmares. Although, it has not be clarified if the nightmares are triggered by the drug or if the user is just able to remember his or her dreams vividly after consumption of the drug.
  • Up to 15% users complained of constipation.
  • Mictural disturbances in some rare cases

Some other side effects of Tianeptine are as mentioned below

  • It lacks any soothing effect on the mind
  • Lacks any anticholinergic effects like cottonmouth.
  • It is advisable for pregnant women and lactating mothers to avoid the drug, as it may not be safe for consumption.  


The dosage of Tianeptine does not depend on the patient’s body weight. Usually, the prescription is anything between a 12 mg to a 40 mg per day, depending on the condition of the patient’s mental disorder.

A 6’3” 150 lbs male was recorded to safely consume 40 mg of Tianeptine without getting any jitters. The best way to consume the drug is by distributing the dosage into three. For example, a 12 mg capsule can be taken thrice a day to reach 36 mg of Tianeptine levels in the body.


Tianeptine is a safe and non-addictive drug. It is legally sold in almost all parts of the world. France and Britain are major producers of the drug, and it is readily available at any drugstore or pharmacy across the world.

It is legal to carry, purchase and consume Tianeptine, as long as you have a physician’s prescription.

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Erica Silva
Senior Editor
Erica Silva is a blogger by choice. She loves to discover the world around her. She likes to share her discoveries, experiences and express herself through her blogs. Currently, she is associated with DementiaTalk Team.

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