Getting the most from your treatment
- You may feel that Citalec is not working for you straightaway. It can take a week or two after starting this treatment before the effect begins to build up, and 4-6 weeks before you feel the full benefit. Do not stop taking it after a week or two, even if you feel it is not helping.
- Try to keep your regular appointments with your doctor. This is so your doctor can check on your progress.
- If you drink alcohol, ask your doctor for advice. Your doctor is likely to recommend that you do not drink alcohol while you are on Citalec, as it increases the risk of side-effects, such as feeling sleepy.
- If you have diabetes, you may need to check your blood sugar (glucose) more frequently, as Citalec may affect the levels of sugar in your blood. Your doctor will be able to advise you about this.
- If you buy any medicines, check with a pharmacist that they are safe to take with Citalec. This is because several medicines which are available from general retail outlets can interfere with this treatment. In particular, do not take the herbal remedy St John's wort, and ask for advice before buying any anti-inflammatory painkillers.
- There are several types of antidepressants and they differ in their possible side-effects. If you find that Citalec does not suit you then let your doctor know, as another may be found that will.
- While you are taking Citalec, you may have thoughts about harming yourself or ending your life. These thoughts may also be associated with your condition. It is very important that you tell your doctor about this if it happens.
- You should expect that a course of treatment will last for several months. This is normal and helps to prevent your symptoms from recurring.
- Do not stop taking Citalec unless your doctor tells you to do so. Stopping treatment suddenly can cause problems and your doctor will probably want you to reduce your dose gradually when this becomes necessary.
- A few people taking Citalec find that their skin is more sensitive to sunlight than normal. Until you know how your skin reacts, use a sun cream with a high sun protection factor (SPF) in strong sunlight.
Q: My doctor says I am just depressed, but I have the symptoms of bipolar disorder. He has me on Citalec, what should I do?
A: Citalec is an antidepressant that belongs to a class of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). SSRIs affect chemicals in the brain that may become unbalanced and cause depression. Citalec is used to treat depression. It may take several (4 to 6) weeks for you to start feeling better and see an improvement in your symptoms. Take Citalec exactly as it is prescribed for you. Do not suddenly stop taking Citalec as this can cause withdrawal side effects, some of which could be severe. Talk to your doctor about any concerns you have about your diagnosis or your use of Citalec. Your doctor is best able to properly evaluate your medical condition and make recommendations based on your specific circumstances. It's important to follow your doctor's instructions and the directions on your prescription label. If you have questions or concerns about these instructions, talk to your doctor or local pharmacist for help. Sarah Lewis, PharmD
The FDA requires Citalec to carry a black-box warning because some children, teenagers, and young adults (up to 24 years of age) who took antidepressants such as Citalec during clinical studies had suicidal thoughts and behavior.
The National Institutes of Health advises that children under 18 shouldn’t take Citalec unless a doctor decides it’s the best option.
The FDA also issued a Safety Announcement in 2012 recommending that Citalec not be prescribed at doses greater than 40 milligrams a day because of the increased risk potentially dangerous abnormalities in the electrical activity of the heart (changes in heart rhythm).
Children who do take Citalec may be more sensitive to its side effects especially appetite and weight loss. Your doctor will closely monitor both.
Citalec may cause problems in newborns following delivery if it is taken during the last months of pregnancy.
Some infants develop withdrawal symptoms including feeding/breathing difficulties, seizures, muscle stiffness, or constant crying. Any of these should be reported to a doctor.
This drug can make you drowsy. Do not engage in activities that require you to be alert until you know how Citalec affects you.
Other conditions that may be a concern when taking Citalec are a history of bipolar or manic-depressive disorder, past suicide attempts, liver disease, seizures, low blood sodium, intestinal ulcers or bleeding problems.
Citalec oral tablet is a prescription drug that’s available as the brand-name drug Celexa. It’s also available as a generic drug. Generic drugs usually cost less. In some cases, they may not be available in every strength or form as the brand-name version.
Citalec is also available as an oral solution.
1. About Citalec
Citalec is a type of antidepressant known as a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI).
It's often used to treat depression and also sometimes for panic attacks.
Citalec helps many people recover from depression, and has fewer unwanted side effects than older antidepressants.
Citalec is available on prescription as tablets and liquid drops that you put in a drink of water.
What if I take too much?
The amount of Citalec that can lead to an overdose varies from person to person.
4. How and when to take it
Take Citalec once a day. You can take it with or without food.
You can take Citalec at any time of day, as long as you stick to the same time every day.
If you have trouble sleeping, it's best to take it in the morning.
Q: What is the best way to get off of Citalec 10mg? I have been on it for 2 years, started at 20mg.
A: Citalec (Celexa) is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor used to treat depression and other conditions as determined by your doctor. Citalec does have a risk of withdrawal symptoms when stopping the medication, especially if Citalec is stopped suddenly. Tapering down the dose of Citalec slowly before completely stopping can help minimize withdrawal symptoms. Some possible withdrawal symptoms include dizziness, drowsiness, vivid dreams, irritability, nausea, tingling sensations, and headache. It is important to speak with your doctor before you stop any medications. Your doctor may be able to give you suggestions on how to cope with withdrawal symptoms and how to taper your dose to help prevent withdrawal. There are tablet cutters available which you may be able to get at your local pharmacy that can help with splitting of tablets to achieve a lower dose. The 10mg tablet of Citalec is the lowest strength available. Laura Cable, PharmD
Rated Citalec (Celexa) for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Report
I have been prescribed Citalec and I’m already feeling better. I am not feeling down at all, (couldn’t go more than about 3 hours without spiralling in to a huge downer). So far so good but it’s early days. No side effects apart from the first day I took it, I felt a bit dizzy and had to sit down, but it only lasted an hour and was fairly mild. Once I took it the second d day, no dizziness whatsoever and so on. I highly recommend this as I have always suffered with severe depression and anxiety/panic attacks since childhood and recently have been through something that was life changing and suffered with PTSD. Since that I was very very angry all the time and very teary, couldn’t even sit still for more than a couple minutes- doesn’t sound like much but I was able to sit down for a couple hours today and feel great about it! Such basic things that I couldn’t do just a while back, I’m able to do now like anyone normal. I finally feel like a person!
What other drugs will affect Citalec?
Taking Citalec with other drugs that make you sleepy or slow your breathing can cause dangerous side effects or death. Ask your doctor before taking a sleeping pill, narcotic pain medicine, prescription cough medicine, a muscle relaxer, or medicine for anxiety, depression, or seizures.
Many drugs can interact with Citalec. Not all possible interactions are listed here. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any you start or stop using, especially:
- St. John's wort;
- tryptophan (sometimes called L-tryptophan);
- a blood thinner (warfarin, Coumadin, Jantoven);
- any other antidepressant;
- heart medication;
- medicine to treat a psychiatric disorder; or
- "triptan" migraine headache medicine.
This list is not complete and many other drugs can interact with Citalec. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Give a list of all your medicines to any healthcare provider who treats you.
Q: I take Citalec and sometimes I'm so irritable. Could this medication cause this?
A: Citalec is in a class of medications called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Citalec is used to treat depression. Citalec works by increasing the natural brain chemical serotonin, which assists in maintaining metal balance. The most common side effects with Citalec are sleepiness; insomnia (trouble sleeping); nausea; dry mouth; excessive sweating; fatigue; diarrhea; upset stomach; sexual dysfunction; tremor; stuffy nose; and infection of the nose, throat, sinuses, and/or voice box. Agitation and anxiety are also reported side effects with Citalec. According to the prescribing information for Citalec, people taking Citalec should let their doctor or health care provider know right away if they are experiencing: irritability; anxiety; agitation; panic attacks; insomnia (trouble sleeping); hostility; aggressiveness; impulsivity; restlessness; hypomania or mania (abnormally increased energy and mood); other unusual changes in behavior; worsening of depression; and thoughts about suicide, which may be detailed and include a plan. These symptoms should be looked for especially early during treatment and when the dose is adjusted up or down; however, people should look for these symptoms on a day-to-day basis, since these changes may be abrupt. These symptoms may be associated with an increased risk of suicidal thinking and behavior. Close monitoring by a doctor or health care professional and possibly a change in medication may be needed if these symptoms occur. This is not a complete list of the side effects associated with Citalec. When your doctor prescribes a new medication, be sure to discuss all your prescription and over-the-counter drugs, including dietary supplements, vitamins, botanicals, minerals, and herbals, as well as the foods you eat. Always keep a current list of the drugs and supplements you take and review it with your health care providers and your pharmacist. If possible, use one pharmacy for all your prescription medications and over-the-counter products. This allows your pharmacist to keep a complete record of all your prescription drugs and to advise you about drug interactions and side effects. Tell your health care provider about any negative side effects from prescription drugs. You can also report them to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration by visiting www.fda.gov/medwatch or by calling 1-800-FDA-1088. There are many causes of irritability. For more specific information, consult with your doctor for guidance based on your health status and current medications, particularly before taking any action. Derek Dore, PharmD
Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Citalec only for the indication prescribed.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
Copyright 1996-2019 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 20.01.
How should this medicine be used?
Citalec comes as a tablet and a solution (liquid) to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day, in the morning or in the evening, with or without food. Take Citalec at around the same time every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take Citalec exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Your doctor may start you on a low dose of Citalec and gradually increase your dose, not more often than once a week.
It may take 1 to 4 weeks before you notice the full benefit of Citalec. Continue to take Citalec even if you feel well. If you suddenly stop taking Citalec, you may experience withdrawal symptoms such as mood changes, irritability, agitation, dizziness, numbness, tingling or electric shock-like sensations in the hands or feet, anxiety, confusion, headache, tiredness, nausea, sweating, shaking, and difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. Do not stop taking Citalec without talking to your doctor. Your doctor will probably decrease your dose gradually.
Among 1063 depressed patients who received Celexa at doses ranging from 10 to 80 mg/day in placebo-controlled trials of up to 6 weeks in duration, 16% discontinued treatment due to an adverse event, as compared to 8% of 446 patients receiving placebo. The adverse events associated with discontinuation and considered drug-related (i.e., associated with discontinuation in at least 1% of Celexa-treated patients at a rate at least twice that of placebo) are shown in TABLE 2. It should be noted that one patient can report more than one reason for discontinuation and be counted more than once in this table.
TABLE 2 : Adverse Events Associated with Discontinuation of Treatment in Short-Term, Placebo-Controlled, Depression Trials Percentage of Patients Discontinuing Due to Adverse Event Citalec (N=1063) Placebo (N=446) Body Svstem/Adverse Event General Asthenia 1%
Citalec side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to Citalec: skin rash or hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Report any new or worsening symptoms to your doctor, such as: mood or behavior changes, anxiety, panic attacks, trouble sleeping, or if you feel impulsive, irritable, agitated, hostile, aggressive, restless, hyperactive (mentally or physically), more depressed, or have thoughts about suicide or hurting yourself.
Call your doctor at once if you have:
a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out;
blurred vision, tunnel vision, eye pain or swelling, or seeing halos around lights;
headache with chest pain and severe dizziness, fainting, fast or pounding heartbeats;
severe nervous system reaction--very stiff (rigid) muscles, high fever, sweating, confusion, fast or uneven heartbeats, tremors, feeling like you might pass out;
high levels of serotonin in the body--agitation, hallucinations, fever, fast heart rate, overactive reflexes, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of coordination, fainting; or
low levels of sodium in the body--headache, confusion, slurred speech, severe weakness, vomiting, feeling unsteady.
Common Citalec side effects may include:
problems with memory or concentration;
dry mouth, increased sweating;
numbness or tingling;
increased appetite, nausea, diarrhea, gas;
fast heartbeats, feeling shaky;
sleep problems (insomnia), feeling tired;
cold symptoms such as stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat;
changes in weight; or
difficulty having an orgasm.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.