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Varenicline is used in smoking addiction

How it works

Varenicline works by preventing tobacco-derived nicotine from binding to its receptors in the brain. This helps to reduce craving and withdrawal symptoms.

Common side effects

Nausea, Headache, Insomnia (difficulty in sleeping), Abnormal dreams, Nasopharyngitis

Available Medicine

  • ₹1516 to ₹1700
    Pfizer Ltd
    2 variant(s)

Expert advice

  • You should start with varenicline treatment 1-2 weeks before the date of smoking cessation.
  • Stop taking varenicline if you develop agitation, depressed mood, changes in behavior or thinking, suicidal ideation or suicidal behavior.
  • Stop the use of varenicline if you experience signs and symptoms of heart attack (myocardial infarction), stroke or any allergic reaction and consult your doctor immediately.
  • Varenicline should be used with caution in patients with fits (seizures) or mental disorders.
  • At the end of treatment, when you discontinue varenicline, you may experience symptoms such as increase in irritability, urge to smoke, depression, and/or inability to sleep (insomnia).
  • Varenicline may cause dizziness and sleepiness, affecting your concentration and judgement. Do not drive or operate machinery till you feel fine.
  • Tell your doctor if you are or planning to become pregnant or are breastfeeding.

Frequently asked questions



Is varenicline safe?
Varenicline is safe if used at prescribed dose and duration as advised by your doctor


Is varenicline an antidepressant?
Varenicline is not an antidepressant. It belongs to a group of medicines called nervous system drugs that are used in nicotine dependence


Is varenicline addictive?
Varenicline is not addictive if used at prescribed dose and duration as advised by your doctor

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Is varenicline available in India?
Yes, it is available in India with prescription of registered medical practitioner


Is varenicline as effective as bupropion?
Varenicline may be more effective than bupropion. Please follow your doctor's advice regarding its use


How long can I take Champix for/ Can I take Chantix forever or for 6 months?
Patient should take Champix/Chantix (varenicline) for prescribed duration as advised by your doctor


Can I take Champix/Chantix (varenicline) with antidepressants/Zoloft/ Adderall/ Lexapro/ Prozac/ Celexa (citalopram)/ Xanax?
Varenicline when used in combination with antidepressants/Zoloft (sertraline)/ Adderall (combination of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine)/ Lexapro (escitalopram)/ Prozac (fluoxetine)/ Celexa (citalopram)/ Xanax (alprazolam) do not cause any harmful interaction. Please follow your doctor's advice regarding its use


Can I take Chantix without the starter pack?
Patient should not take Chantix (varenicline) without the starter pack and should follow the instructions of doctor regarding the dosage and duration


Can I take Champix with high blood pressure?
Yes, patient with high blood pressure can take Champix (varenicline). Please follow your doctor's advice regarding its use. However, if you experience symptoms of heart attack or stroke, inform your doctor and stop the varenicline treatment immediately.

Content on this page was last updated on 25 March, 2017, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)