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Celexa, with the generic name citalopram hydrobromide, is an oral medication indicated to treat depression. It works to regulate serotonin levels in the brain, helping to stabilize emotions and create a more balanced state of mind. By targeting chemical imbalances in the brain, Celexa can reduce symptoms of depression such as fatigue, irritability, and difficulty sleeping or concentrating.

Celexa is an antidepressant belonging to a group of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). It is a prescription medicine used to treat major depressive disorder (MDD). Obsessive compulsive disorder, panic disorder, and social phobia. The antidepressant effects may take one to four weeks to occur.

Uses and Dosage

You need to take Citalopram with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually once daily in the morning or evening. The dosage is based on your medical condition, response to treatment, age, laboratory tests, and other medications you may be taking.

Your doctor may direct you to start taking this drug at a low dose and gradually increase your dose to reduce your risk of side effects. You should not increase your dose or use this drug more often or for longer than prescribed. Your condition will not improve any faster, but your risk of side effects will increase.

You can administer Celexa once daily, with or without food, at an initial dosage of 20 mg once daily, with an increase to a maximum dosage of 40 mg once daily at an interval of no less than one week. Dosages above 40 mg once daily are not recommended due to the risk of QT prolongation.

Usual Adult Dose of Celexa for Depression:

  • Initial dose: 20 mg orally once a day
  • Maintenance dose: 20 to 40 mg orally once a day
  • Maximum dose: 40 mg orally per day
  • Over 60 years of age: Recommended dose: 20 mg orally once a day

Side Effects

Common Celexa Side Effects May Include:

Severe side effects of Citalopram Include:

  • Shaking or tremors
  • Decreased interest in sex
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Easy bruising or bleeding
  • Fainting
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Increased heart rate
  • Seizures
  • Eye pain
  • Widened pupils
  • Vision changes
  • Signs of serotonin toxicity (fast heartbeat, agitation, loss of coordination, hallucination, severe dizziness, persistent nausea and vomiting, unexplained fever, muscle twitching)

Form and Strength

Celexa and its Generic Alternatives Citalopram come only in the form of tablet:

Celexa Tablet

  • 20 mg
  • 40 mg

Citalopram Tablet

  • 10 mg
  • 20 mg
  • 40 mg


  • Do not use Celexa within 2 weeks before or after using an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days. A dangerous drug interaction could occur. Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) include isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue injection, phenelzine, and tranylcypromine.
  • Celexa may increase the chance for pregnancy complications such as preterm birth (birth before 37 weeks of pregnancy) and low birth weight (weighing less than 5 pounds, 8 ounces [2500 grams] at birth).
  • Citalopram may cause harm to unborn babies and breastfed infants. Thus, it should be avoided by pregnant and breastfeeding moms.
  • Celexa and alcohol may interact and worsen adverse effects, like dizziness, drowsiness, and blurred vision. Also, practice extreme caution when driving, using machinery, or doing activities requiring alertness or clear vision.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

When is the best time to take Celexa?

You can take it at any time of day, but it's best to stick to the same time every day. You can take it with or without food.

Is Celexa prescribed for children?

Children younger than 18 years of age should not normally take Celexa, but in some cases, a doctor may decide that citalopram is the best medication to treat a child's condition.

Does Celexa make you sleepy?

Yes, this medication may cause drowsiness.


Additional information

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Online Pharmacies Canada has provided information from third parties intended to increase awareness and does not contain all the information about Celexa (Citalopram). Talk to your doctor or other qualified medical practitioners for medical attention or advice, or if you have any concerns about Celexa (Citalopram).