L-tryptophan (Tryptophan, Tryptan)

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Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

GENERIC NAME: L-tryptophan

BRAND NAME: Tryptophan, Tryptan

DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: L-tryptophan is an herbal supplement used for depression. Chemically it is a natural occurring amino acid obtained from plants and animals. L-tryptophan is an "essential" amino acid because humans cannot make it and must obtain L-tryptophan from food. It is converted in the body to serotonin. People with depression have an imbalance of serotonin and other brain chemicals. Increased serotonin levels in the brain improve symptoms of depression.

PRESCRIPTION: No

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

PREPARATIONS: L-tryptophan is available in 500 mg and 1000 mg tablets and capsules.

STORAGE: L-tryptophan is stored in tightly closed containers. Due to multiple companies producing this medication, storage requirement may vary based on manufacturer.

PRESCRIBED FOR: L-tryptophan is used for depression, anxiety, sleep apnea, premenstrual syndrome and many other problems.

DOSING:

  • Adults: Take 8 to 12 grams of L-tryptophan by mouth per day. L-tryptophan should be taken in divided doses of three or four times a day.
  • Pediatric: Safe and effective use in pediatric patients is not determined.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/29/2014



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