Celexa is an antidepressant medication sometimes used to treat anxiety symptoms. It is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). This type of medication restores the balance of serotonin in the brain in order to help improve mood problems.
Celexa, like other antidepressants, must be taken on a regular basis to be effective in treating depression and anxiety. It can take up to four weeks of regular use before someone begins to feel better.
Celexa comes in doses of 20 mg., 40 mg., and in a oral solution (liquid) form.
Your doctor should prescribe the lowest possible dose to start with and increase in increments, if needed.
Before Taking Celexa
Some people with certain medical conditions either should not take Celexa or should have adjustments in their prescribed dosage. Make sure your doctor knows if you have any of the following medical conditions:
- Liver or kidney disease
- Seizure disorder, such as epilepsy
- History of substance abuse
- History or suicidal thoughts
- Bipolar disorder
People under the age of 24 have sometimes had thoughts of suicide when first beginning taking antidepressant medication or when their dosage is increased. If you are experiencing increased symptoms of depression or thoughts of suicide, you should immediately contact your doctor.
In addition, thoughts of suicide or increased depression may occur when stopping Celexa. You should not stop this medication without first talking with your doctor. You may be advised to slowly taper the amount of Celexa you are taking.
There are a number of medications that may interfere with the effectiveness of Celexa or could cause dangerous interactions while taking this medication. It is important to let your doctor know of any other medications you may be taking, including over-the-counter medications, herbal supplements and vitamins.
MAOIs should not be taken with Celexa. If you are taking an MAOI, you will need to stop at least 14 days before beginning this medication and should not take an MAOI for at least 14 days after stopping Celexa. Combining Celexa with an MAOI is dangerous and can sometimes cause fatal interactions.
In addition to MAOIs, you should tell your doctor if you are taking any of the following medications before beginning Celexa:
- Other antidepressants
- Medications for pain, arthiritis, fever or swelling including aspirin and ibuprofen, and naxopren
Side Effects of Celexa
Although rare, some side effects or allergic reaction to Celexa require immediate medical care. Call 911 or visit the nearest emergency room if you are experiencing any of the following:
- Skin rash or hives
- Swelling of face, lips, tongue or throat
- Difficulty breathing
There are also a number of possible side effects that, should you be experiencing, you should contact your doctor immediately: