Compare Cymbalta vs. Lexapro

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Cymbalta (duloxetine)

Prescription only

Lexapro (escitalopram)

Prescription only
Improves mood and relieves certain types of pain.

Cymbalta (duloxetine) is good for treating depression, anxiety, and some forms of chronic pain, but it is more likely than other antidepressants to cause problems if you drink alcohol or have high blood pressure.

4.8/ 7 average rating with 496 reviewsforCymbalta
Improves mood and helps you relax.

Lexapro (escitalopram) is good for treating depression and anxiety. It is less likely to cause side effects than and has fewer drug interactions. However, it might not be a good choice if you have liver or heart problems.

4.9/ 7 average rating with 1063 reviewsforLexapro
Upsides
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine) may help relieve nerve pain from diabetes and other forms of chronic pain.
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine) has several uses, which may be good for people with multiple conditions.
  • Available as a generic, which is cheaper.
  • Effective at relieving depression and anxiety symptoms.
  • Lowers the likelihood that your depression will come back.
  • Lexapro (escitalopram) has less drug interactions than other similar antidepressants and might cause fewer side effects.
Downsides
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine) may not be a good option if you're a heavy drinker, or have liver or kidney problems.
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine) can increase high blood pressure.
  • Like most antidepressants, Cymbalta (duloxetine) can cause higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior for people aged 24 and younger.
  • Can cause a small weight gain of 1-5 pounds.
  • Lexapro (escitalopram) is not a good option if you have heart or liver problems.
  • The first antidepressant you try might not always work, so you may need to try a few different medicines until you find one that works for you.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Pill
  • Liquid
Price
Lowest price near you
$16.25
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Lowest price near you
$9.9
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Reviews
496 
58%
think this treatment is worth it
49%
think this treatment works well
24%
think this treatment is a hassle

Have you used Cymbalta (duloxetine)?

Leave a review
1063 
61%
think this treatment is worth it
48%
think this treatment works well
15%
think this treatment is a hassle

Have you used Lexapro (escitalopram)?

Leave a review
Side effects
10possible side effects
  • Nausea
    23%
  • Headache
    14%
  • Dry mouth
    13%
  • Drowsiness
    10%
  • Fatigue
    9%
  • Difficulty sleeping
    9%
  • Constipation
    9%
  • Dizziness
    9%
  • Diarrhea
    9%
  • Decreased appetite
    7%
See more detailed side effects
10possible side effects
  • Headache
    24%
  • Nausea
    18%
  • Problems ejaculating
    14%
  • Sleepiness
    13%
  • Insomnia
    12%
  • Dry mouth
    9%
  • Diarrhea
    8%
  • Fatigue
    8%
  • Decreased libido
    7%
  • Problems with orgasm
    6%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and warnings
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior

    Age 24 years or younger

  • Serotonin syndrome

    Taking tricyclic antidepressants, lithium, tramadol, fentanyl, amphetamines, certain headache medications (triptans), St. John's Wort

  • Withdrawal

    Stopping Cymbalta (duloxetine) abruptly

  • Increased bleeding

    Taking other blood-thinning drugs (including aspirin, NSAIDs such as Advil, warfarin)

  • Changes in blood pressure and risk of falls

    Elderly patients

    ...and 4 more risk factors

  • Bipolar disorder

    History of bipolar disorder

    ...and 1 more risk factors

See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior

    Age 24 years or younger

  • Serotonin syndrome

    Using other medications that affect serotonin

  • Withdrawal

    Stopping Lexapro (escitalopram) suddenly

  • Increased bleeding

    Taking blood thinners

  • Uncovering of bipolar disorder

    Bipolar disorder

See more detailed risks and warnings