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Citalopram is used in the treatment of depression and panic disorder.

How it works

Citalopram is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). This medicine restores the chemical imbalance in the brain thereby relieving depression related symptoms.

Common side effects

Nausea, Nervousness, Palpitations, Abnormal dreams, Agitation, Altered sleeping pattern, Memory loss, Anxiety, Impaired concentration, Confusion, Constipation, Decreased libido, Diarrhoea, Dizziness, Dry mouth, Flatulence, Headache, Increased saliva production, Increased sweating, Lack of interest, Itching, Loss of appetite, Migraine, Muscle pain, Joint pain, Running nose, Nasal congestion, Reduced emotions, Ringing in ear, Stomach pain, Pricking sensation, Tingling sensation of extremity, Numbness of extremity, Tremor, Vomiting, Weakness, Fatigue, Weight loss, Yawning


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Expert advice

  • Do not use an NSAID (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug) with citalopram as this may cause bruising or bleeding.
  • Continue to regularly report any new or worsening symptoms such as mood or behaviour changes, anxiety, panic attacks or even thoughts about suicide while you are using citalopram.
  • You may experience increased anxiety/depression in the beginning of citalopram treatment, which will disappear during continued treatment.
  • Do not stop using citalopram suddenly unless directed, or you could have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms.
  • Do not drink alcohol while taking citalopram.
  • Do not drive or operate machinery while using citalopram as it may cause sleepiness or dizziness and may impair your thinking or reactions.

Frequently asked questions


Q. What citalopram used for?
Citalopram is used in the treatment of depression and panic disorder.
Q. Does citalopram cause weight gain/ high blood pressure/ headaches?
Citalopram may cause certain side effects such as headaches, high blood pressure and rarely rapid weight gain.
Q. Does citalopram contain monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOI)?
Citalopram does not contain MAOI. However, citalopram should not be taken if a MAOI inhibitor is taken in the past 14 days, as it may cause dangerous drug interaction.

Content on this page was last updated on 30 September, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)