Is Celexa And Lexapro The Same Thing?

Question

Asked by Tennispro35

Is Celexa And Lexapro The Same Thing?

Are Lexapro and Celexa the same thing? If they're not, which is better for anxiety?

Answer

I am glad you asked this question. It has been something I have been wondering about myself. I am not a doctor, just a person who suffers from depression, so I had to do a bit of research and here is what I found:

First of all I want to give you the links for both Celexa and Lexapro information which can be found on Health Central.

It seems both medications can be used to treat depression and are similar chemically and are both made by the same manufacturer. But they are very different in some ways and are not interchangeable. Only Lexapro is approved to treat anxiety, and only Celexa is available as a generic. Celexa might work to help anxiety but they just haven't done enough studies yet to say that it is specifically for treatment of anxiety.

The studies done on the effectivness of Lexapro vs Celexa for the treatment of depression are a mixed bag. Some studies show Lexapro is superior and some studies show no difference. It just all depends upon the individual as to what drug will be tolerated better and will be more effective.

There is a site dedicated to Lexapro FAQ's where I found this quote from a doctor:

"Theoretically, since Lexapro is the "child" of the "parent" Celexa, it should be possible to switch a patient directly from Celexa (whose usual dose is 20-40mg) to Lexapro (usual dose 10-20mg), but some patients require tapering off of Celexa even when starting on Lexapro. I have some patients doing quite well on Celexa who did not respond as well to Lexapro (I still can't figure out why), and for this reason the makers of Lexapro do not, in general, suggest switching from Celexa to Lexapro if the patient is doing well on Celexa."

There are also many threads on forums where patients are asking the same question as you ask. Here is one such interesting thread with many different responses.

The two drugs have different possible adverse side effects. Here is a short list from the manufacturer's site:

Celexa (Citalopram): GI upset; somnolence; dry mouth; sweating; tremor; ejaculation disorder; bleeding abnormalities.

Lexapro (Escitalopram):Insomnia, somnolence; dry mouth; GI upset; dizziness; sweating; fatigue; libido decreased.

I hope this helps some! Thank you for your question.