Antidepressant Side Effects

Citalopram (Celexa) side effects

Posted by on Apr 17, 2014 in Antidepressant Side Effects | 1 comment

Celexa is the brand name for the antidepressant medication citalopram hydrobromide, which was originally developed by H. Lundbeck A/S  based in Denmark and marketed there under the brand name Cipramil in 1989. Celexa is marketed by drug marketer and seller Forest Laboratories in the US under an agreement with Lundbeck with approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) given in July 1998.

Citalopram is one of a class of drugs known as a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), which acts on neurotransmitters to reduce the uptake of serotonin (necessary to terminate its effects), allowing more serotonin to remain longer in the body and control the balance of neurotransmitters to reduce depression. Citalopram is considered to be a better option in terms of SSRIs because it is well-tolerated, has fewer withdrawal symptoms and drug interactions as well as fewer side-effects. However, citalopram is still associated with many of the side effects that plague those who are on SSRIs.

One of the most common Celexa side effects is sexual dysfunction. This includes loss of libido, difficulty in achieving orgasm (anorgasmia) or ejaculation, and decreased reaction to sexual stimuli (genital anesthesia). In some subjects, the effect is permanent following cessation of taking the drug (post SSRI sexual dysfunction). There is evidence that citalopram may also increase suicidal tendencies in younger patients, and need to be closely monitored for any undesirable changes in behavior.

Other common citalopram side effects include dry mouth, weight gain, nausea, excessive yawning, drowsiness, increased sweating, trembling, nightmares, insomnia, diarrhea or constipation, frequent urination, and fatigue. Some people also develop a habit of teeth grinding (bruxism), cardiac arrhythmia, anxiety, blood pressure changes, mood swings, headache, dilated pupils, and dizziness. Still others but quite rarely experience hallucinations, convulsions, and photosensitivity.

Citalopram-induced side effects manifest in about 20% of patients, and withdrawal symptoms such as irritability, tingling sensations and dizziness may also be experienced. Patients who experience extreme levels of any side effect should consult with a physician at once.

Read More