Prescription onlyLower-cost generic available

Celexa

(Citalopram)

  • Pill
  • Oral solution
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Improves mood and helps you relax.

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Prescription onlyLower-cost generic available

Our pharmacists’ bottom line

Celexa (Citalopram) is good for treating depression and anxiety. Might be less likely to cause side effects than some antidepressants, but not the best choice for people with heart or liver problems.

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Works well?Does it work?
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  • Effective at relieving depression and anxiety symptoms.
  • Causes less sleepiness compared to other antidepressants.
  • Six out of ten people who use an antidepressant for the first time find that it works for them.
  • Can cause sexual side effects like low libido and an inability to orgasm or ejaculate.
  • Can cause minor weight gain (1 to 5 pounds).
  • Celexa (Citalopram) can cause an irregular heartbeat if you take a high dose (40 mg a day, or more).
  • Not a good option for you if you have heart or liver problems.
  • Like most antidepressants, it can cause a higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior for people younger than 24 years.
  • The first antidepressant you try doesn't always work or it can cause side effects you really don't like. You might need to try a few different medications until you find one that works for you.

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Side effects for Celexa (Citalopram)

From clinical trials of Celexa / Depression ( 1509)

  • NauseaNausea21% for Citalopram vs.14% for placebo
  • Dry mouthDry mouth20% for Citalopram vs.14% for placebo
  • DrowsinessDrowsiness18% for Citalopram vs.10% for placebo
  • Sleep difficultySleep difficulty15% for Citalopram vs.14% for placebo
  • Sweating increasedSweating increased11% for Citalopram vs.9% for placebo
  • DiarrheaDiarrhea8% for Citalopram vs.5% for placebo
  • TremorTremor8% for Citalopram vs.6% for placebo
  • Ejaculation disorderEjaculation disorder6% for Citalopram vs.1% for placebo
  • Inflammation inside the noseInflammation inside the nose5% for Citalopram vs.4% for placebo
  • IndigestionIndigestion5% for Citalopram vs.4% for placebo

What to expect when you take Celexa (Citalopram) for Depression

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Tips from our pharmacists
  • Take with food to avoid upset stomach.
  • Takes about 8 to 12 weeks to see the medication's full effects on your mood.
  • Stop taking it slowly to avoid getting withdrawal symptoms.
  • Tell your doctor if you notice sudden mood changes or unusual thoughts.

Risks and Warnings for Celexa (Citalopram)

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    • Higher risk if:
    • Age 24 years or younger

    Celexa (Citalopram) may increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior. Watch for worsening depression or any unusual changes in mood or behavior, especially during the first few months of treatment or when the dose changes. Report anything concerning to a doctor immediately. Celexa (Citalopram) is not approved for use in children younger than age 18.

    This is a black box warning. The FDA requires this warning when there is a significant risk of serious or life-threatening effects that anyone taking the drug should consider.

Means that some groups have a high risk of experiencing this side effect

Tips from pharmacists and people taking Celexa (Citalopram)

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The FDA category for this medication is C. It is advised that you: Weigh risks vs. benefits
Pregnancy
Alcohol
  • Don't drink alcohol
    Age: 22
    Gender: Man
    Taken for: Depression
Food
  • Tips from our pharmacists
  • Take with food to avoid upset stomach.
  • I had tried 10mg & 20mg with little to no difference. I was just increased to 40mg two weeks ago. I am ALWAYS tired to the point if I lay down I'm passing out. My appetite has also decreased significantly to where I'm only eating one meal a day. I've also noticed difficulties sexually....it has become very difficult to have an orgasm. I'm hoping the side effects will subside as my body adjusts to the higher dose.
    Age: 25
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Depression
Sex
  • Upsides and downsides from our pharmacists
  • Can cause sexual side effects like low libido and an inability to orgasm or ejaculate.
  • Risks from our pharmacists
  • Celexa (Citalopram) can cause lower sex drive or difficulty having an orgasm. If the problem persists after the first 2 to 3 months, you can talk to your doctor about alternative antidepressants or performance-enhancing medications.
  • The first and most noticeable side effect for me was drowsiness. This effect fades with prolonged use. Otherwise citalopram has, for me, the lowest occurrence of side effects of any antidepressant I've tried, including Zoloft, Wellbutrin, Lexapro, and Effexor. Did not cause sexual side effects for me. Does cause excessive sweating, but nothing that an extra strength anti-perspirant and baby powder can't handle.
    Age: 35
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Depression
    Duration taken: Two years or more
  • Drug saved my life, but serious sexual side effects.
    Age: 33
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Panic disorder
    Duration taken: A year or so
  • It killed my sex drive and did nothing for my anxiety, so I stopped after about four months. Don't hesitate to tell your doctor it isn't working. There are other options.
    Age: 22
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Panic disorder
    Duration taken: A few months
Sleep
  • Risks from our pharmacists
  • Stopping Celexa (Citalopram) suddenly may cause withdrawal symptoms such as nausea, anxiety, agitation, flu-like symptoms, trouble sleeping, and dizziness. Withdrawal symptoms usually occur within 3 days of stopping the medication, and go away within 1 to 2 weeks. Work with your doctor to gradually reduce your dose.
  • The first and most noticeable side effect for me was drowsiness. This effect fades with prolonged use. Otherwise citalopram has, for me, the lowest occurrence of side effects of any antidepressant I've tried, including Zoloft, Wellbutrin, Lexapro, and Effexor. Did not cause sexual side effects for me. Does cause excessive sweating, but nothing that an extra strength anti-perspirant and baby powder can't handle.
    Age: 35
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Depression
    Duration taken: Two years or more
  • This is my second time taking this after trying many others. It works great for my depression but the sweating is horrible and hot flashes!! Always take it at night and it doesn't affect my sleep. But I do feel very tired in the mornings.
    Age: 58
    Gender: Woman
    Duration taken: A few months
  • Helped me during a difficult separation. However, I no longer felt motivated. Switched to taking it at night due to drowsiness, and I gained 10 pounds. Weaned myself off 5 months ago, terrible side effects and can't lose the weight.
    Age: 49
    Gender: Woman
    Duration taken: Two years or more
Weight gain or loss
  • Upsides and downsides from our pharmacists
  • Can cause minor weight gain (1 to 5 pounds).
  • I gained a lot of weight but I'm alive. And my suicidal depression had no cure until Citalopram.
    Age: 32
    Gender: Man
    Taken for: Depression
    Duration taken: Two years or more
  • Be sure to take it at the same time every day. I get horrible, migraine-like headaches if I take it late. Also, I've gained so much weight since taking it.
    Age: 51
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Depression
    Duration taken: Two years or more
  • Helped me during a difficult separation. However, I no longer felt motivated. Switched to taking it at night due to drowsiness, and I gained 10 pounds. Weaned myself off 5 months ago, terrible side effects and can't lose the weight.
    Age: 49
    Gender: Woman
    Duration taken: Two years or more