So, you find yourself considering pramiracetam as an alternative method for treating your depression because all those wonderful Happy Pills made by Big Pharma that seem to work for everybody else have done nothing at all to relieve your condition? Yeah, I’ve been there. I have moved into the Treatment Resistant Depression list due to the fact that Paxil, Zoloft, Buspar, Celexa, Seroquel and all the rest of those famous anti-depressants have managed to do was raise my expectations and lower my bank account.
In the past I have written of my experiences venturing into the world of alternative treatments for depression like 5-HTP and SAMe. Neither of those brought any better luck to my ongoing battle with clinical depression than those pills that are bringing Big Pharma big bucks and others dealing with depression some sort of relief. I am highly dubious of those claims, but the evidence seems to run counter to my suspicions of a placebo effect.
Pramiracetam is known as a nootropic drug, which as a class are alleged to enhance cognition. You might know nootropic drugs better by the extremely misleading moniker “smart drugs.” These are a collection of substances that lure with the promise of increasing focus, heightening intelligence and even boosting energy. Perhaps. Perhaps not. Pramiracetam is just one a family of different forms of drugs that each end with the letters “racetam.” Pramiracetam is derived from the same source as the similarly named piracetam, but is supposed to have greater potency. Specific claims range from less than ten times the potency of piracetam to more than 30 times the potency so, in all honesty, there seems little wisdom in going with piracetam over pramiracetam unless the slightly higher cost of the latter scares you off.
Understand first of all that pramiracetam is not designed specifically to treat depression. Indeed, that’s the rub of nootropics. Pramiracetam has produced tons of clinically unsubstantiated claims of effectiveness in treating a host of medical conditions including dementia, stroke, clotting problems and, if you believe that is belongs in the same category as those other health issues not nearly as easily avoided, alcoholism. I believe you must choose to pick up a drink before you become an alcoholic. On the other hand, no activity has yet been identified as being necessary to develop depression. So, basically, those who want to claim that alcoholism is a disease can prove it before claiming so cavalierly.
But back to pramiracetam as a treatment for depression. The main problem with using this or any other nootropic drug to treat depression, aside from the lack of any scientific evidence suggesting that it has any biological mechanism within the body that qualifies it for such claims, is that the dosage recommendations for pramiracetam seem to about as random as the opportunity for gut-busting laughter on “Saturday Night Live.” In the first place, pramiracetam is available in the form of a powder. You can’t even find universal agreement on the best way to prepare the powder. Some say with water, others say with juice. As for the amount of powder to dissolve in the liquid of your choice, well, it seems to be pretty much a case of decide for yourself.
I tried various dosage of pramiracetam mixed with water, grapefruit juice, energy drink and even Mountain Dew Throwback. Why Mountain Dew Throwback? Because, and I’m not overstating the case here, the taste of pramiracetam is without question one of the most disgusting you will ever experience. Seriously. I mean doubt that much of what those guys on those shows who are willing to eat anything have tasted very much that is more unappealing to the taste buds than pramiracetam. So you will definitely want to find something tasty in which to mix the powder.
Okay, here’s the skinny: various dosages in an array of liquids containing various ingredients. I tried this for as long as my supply lasted, which was about two weeks of dosing twice a day. The upshot: I should have just stuck with the Mountain Dew Throwback. At least it brings me temporary pleasure from its infinitely more agreeable taste. As for any positive effect in treating my Treatment Resistant Depression? Let’s just say that the odds are not very great that I will try aniracetam, piracetam, oxiracetam or any of the other members of the racetam family of nootropics to treat my depression.
It is my fervent hope that I can one day provide a review of electroconvulsive therapy to cure my Treatment Resistant Depression. Until United Healthcare stops actively blocking my access to this scientifically proven treatment of depression, that will remain a dream.