What does agomelatine do and how effective is it?

What does agomelatine do?

Agomelatine is an antidepressant that acts on brain receptors for melatonin, a hormone that is important for regulating sleep, as well as serotonin receptors. Agomelatine is the only antidepressant that acts on melatonin receptors.

How effective is agomelatine?

Agomelatine is a relatively new medicine, but the data available suggest it may be about as effective as other antidepressants. In trials of other antidepressants, about 50% of people found their depression symptoms were halved.

Although all antidepressants have shown similar efficacy when tested in groups of people in clinical trials, keep in mind that individuals can find one antidepressant works better for them than another. So if the first antidepressant you try doesn’t seem to be working for you after a few weeks, talk to your doctor about switching to another. A psychological therapy, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), could also be an option.

Find out more about

If you are starting agomelatine, see 10 things you should know about antidepressants.

You can also read more about depression and the options for treating it.

For more information

The consumer medicine information (CMI) for your brand of agomelatine is available from our website or a pharmacist. The CMI includes:

  • how to take this medicine
  • what to do if you forget to take it
  • if you take too much (overdose)
  • things you must and must not do while taking this medicine
  • signs of severe reactions and what to do.