Phenylpiracetam, the brand name of either Phenotropil or Carphedon, is a piracetam derivative and also a member of the racetam family, has an additional phenyl group at position 4 of the 2-oxopyrrolidine ring. It was first developed in Russia as a nootropic or cognitive enhancing compound that may have anti-amnesic, antidepressant, anticonvulsant, anxiolytic, and memory enhancement effects.[1] Phenylpiracetam has nootropic properties and the phenylpiracetam supplements can have a pronounced stimulatory effect on motor responses and improve physical performance. Though phenylpiracetam has previously been used by the athletes, it is now included in the WADA list of prohibited during sports.


With immense health benefits, phenylpiracetam is more effective in improving memory and learning compared to other nootropic supplements, and by improving cerebral processing, it benefits cognitive function. Phenylpiracetam health benefits include –

  • Enhances cognitive function [4]
  • Increases learning and memory capacity [5]
  • Enhances focus [6]
  • Increases mental energy [7]
  • Reduces the effects of stress and anxiety [8]
  • People report it promotes pleasure, motivation and attention
  • Enhances athletic performance [9]

Phenylpiracetam is very helpful for working out and enhancing athletic performance as it reduces the harmful effects of stress on your body, which is extremely useful for an athlete, increasing stamina, recovery, and endurance. Such increased tolerance to stress also incorporates increasing your body’s tolerance to cold. Phenylpiracetam has even been given to Russian soldiers and astronauts because of its ability to enhance the performance of both the mind and body.
Different cognitive and physical symptoms that are seen after a stroke appear to be more rapidly recovered with daily usage of phenylpiracetam than with placebo.[2]

How it works

The benefits of supplementing phenylpiracetam have been demonstrated inside and outside the lab quite well, but its exact mechanism of action is not fully understood.
Phenylpiracetam is a nootropic supplement that has a pronounced anti-amnesic action, a direct activating effect on the integrative activity of the brain, helps consolidate memory, improves concentration and mental performance, facilitates the learning process, increases the information transfer between the hemispheres of the brain, increases the resistance of brain tissue to hypoxia and toxic effects, has anticonvulsant and anxiolytic effects, regulates the processes of activation and inhibition of central nervous system, and improves mood.
Phenylpiracetam has a positive effect on the metabolism and blood circulation in brain, stimulates the redox processes and increases energy potential through utilization of glucose, improves regional blood flow in ischemic areas of the brain. It increases noradrenaline, dopamine and serotonin content in the brain, does not affect the levels of GABA, associates neither with GABAA nor GABAB receptors, has no noticeable effect on the spontaneous bioelectric activity of the brain, does not influence respiration and the cardiovascular system. It shows no significant diuretic effect and has anorexigenic effect during treatment.[3]


Similar to other nootropics in the racetam family, there are few reported side effects from supplementing phenylpiracetam when you take at the recommended dosages. Still, if you experience headaches, it may be a sign that you should add or increase your choline supplementation that is usually recommended at the time of taking racetams.


A recommended dosage level of Phenylpiracetam may be to take between 100 and 300 mg per day, but this can be split into two equal administrations due to its long half-life. The supplement is quite fast acting and it is not recommended to take before going to bed as it may lead to insomnia. It is the best way to use Phenylpiracetam once in the morning and then another in the early afternoon.