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Overcoming Sexual Side-effects Of Lexapro


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#1 Petrucci914

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Posted 13 August 2008 - 02:03 PM

Hello everyone,

I'm on Lexapro and suffer from several of the sexual side-effects. Some of them are a blessing in disguise, as I've suffered from Premature Ejaculation since I've had depression. The main problem is difficulty in reaching orgasm. I've read that adding Bupropion or Buspirone can help overcome this. Has anyone tried either of these additions? If so, which helped the most with this issue? Thanks!
I am NOT a professional. My postings only include my experience and personal advice. Please see a medical professional.

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#2 name123

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Posted 26 August 2008 - 01:11 PM

Hello everyone,

I'm on Lexapro and suffer from several of the sexual side-effects. Some of them are a blessing in disguise, as I've suffered from Premature Ejaculation since I've had depression. The main problem is difficulty in reaching orgasm. I've read that adding Bupropion or Buspirone can help overcome this. Has anyone tried either of these additions? If so, which helped the most with this issue? Thanks!



I've been taking 300 WB XL and 10mg Lex. Having to quit the Lex due to the sexual side effects. The WB might have had an effect on the side effects but not enough of one.

#3 sedatedsam

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 07:46 AM

Hello everyone,

I'm on Lexapro and suffer from several of the sexual side-effects. Some of them are a blessing in disguise, as I've suffered from Premature Ejaculation since I've had depression. The main problem is difficulty in reaching orgasm. I've read that adding Bupropion or Buspirone can help overcome this. Has anyone tried either of these additions? If so, which helped the most with this issue? Thanks!



I've been taking 300 WB XL and 10mg Lex. Having to quit the Lex due to the sexual side effects. The WB might have had an effect on the side effects but not enough of one.



I'm new to this forum and dismayed to find that only 2 people have anything to say in a forum about overcoming the sexual side-effects of lexapro. Should I give up hope now?! :hearts: I wonder if that's because it's such a difficult topic, or whether it's because noone has had any success in finding a way to overcome the problem. I'm hoping it's the former!

Until very recently I was taking Citalopram (I think lexapro is escitalopram?) and found it extremely effective for my depression but have just switched to Zispin (mirtazapine) because I've just about had enough of the sexual side effects. Over the years I've tried many different meds (Cipramil, Cipralex, Prozac, lustral, trazodone, reboxetine etc. etc and more 'natural' alternatives such as 5htp, SamE, tyrosine and others) but have found Citalopram to be the best.

If I could only overcome the sexual side effects of it, it would be my drug of choice and I would stay on it forever as I don't have any other side effects. I too have heard that adding either Buspirone or Buproprion helps counteract the sexual side effects. Unfortunately Buproprian is not licenced for depression in the UK and my doctor won't give me Buspirone either. Hence the switch to Zispin (Mirtazipine) which I'm having an awful time with (sedation, depression and extreme anger).

Has anyone out there successfully overcome the sexual side effects of Citalopram/Escitalopram or any of the other SSRI's for that matter? Here's hoping...

#4 Fcarr007

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 10:01 PM

Hey Sedatedsam, I have been on 300mg WXL for about a month now, I'm not sure if this information will do much good but I was having side effects from depression including anorgasmia proir to WXL, the wellbutrin helped me get over that around week two. Then I added celexa, a relative of Lexapro, anorgasmia was back worse than ever, I tried to stay with the celexa for two weeks at just 5mg which really isn't enough time to treat depression, but the sexual side effects were so overwhelming that I quit. It tood about a week get get back to my new normal functioning. Good luck to you.

Hello everyone,

I'm on Lexapro and suffer from several of the sexual side-effects. Some of them are a blessing in disguise, as I've suffered from Premature Ejaculation since I've had depression. The main problem is difficulty in reaching orgasm. I've read that adding Bupropion or Buspirone can help overcome this. Has anyone tried either of these additions? If so, which helped the most with this issue? Thanks!



I've been taking 300 WB XL and 10mg Lex. Having to quit the Lex due to the sexual side effects. The WB might have had an effect on the side effects but not enough of one.



I'm new to this forum and dismayed to find that only 2 people have anything to say in a forum about overcoming the sexual side-effects of lexapro. Should I give up hope now?! :hearts: I wonder if that's because it's such a difficult topic, or whether it's because noone has had any success in finding a way to overcome the problem. I'm hoping it's the former!

Until very recently I was taking Citalopram (I think lexapro is escitalopram?) and found it extremely effective for my depression but have just switched to Zispin (mirtazapine) because I've just about had enough of the sexual side effects. Over the years I've tried many different meds (Cipramil, Cipralex, Prozac, lustral, trazodone, reboxetine etc. etc and more 'natural' alternatives such as 5htp, SamE, tyrosine and others) but have found Citalopram to be the best.

If I could only overcome the sexual side effects of it, it would be my drug of choice and I would stay on it forever as I don't have any other side effects. I too have heard that adding either Buspirone or Buproprion helps counteract the sexual side effects. Unfortunately Buproprian is not licenced for depression in the UK and my doctor won't give me Buspirone either. Hence the switch to Zispin (Mirtazipine) which I'm having an awful time with (sedation, depression and extreme anger).

Has anyone out there successfully overcome the sexual side effects of Citalopram/Escitalopram or any of the other SSRI's for that matter? Here's hoping...



#5 joey

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 10:45 PM

Hello everyone,

I'm on Lexapro and suffer from several of the sexual side-effects. Some of them are a blessing in disguise, as I've suffered from Premature Ejaculation since I've had depression. The main problem is difficulty in reaching orgasm. I've read that adding Bupropion or Buspirone can help overcome this. Has anyone tried either of these additions? If so, which helped the most with this issue? Thanks!


Yes I have had problems in that area since I started the Cipramil. It has been extremely frustrating for my husband and I. I won't stop taking it though because for me it has treated my depression so well. Now I just have to overcome my anxiety and negative thinking! :hearts:

I think you should definitely talk to your doctor about taking those other medicines.

#6 Nole

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Posted 28 September 2008 - 09:24 AM

I would say I have less of a desire since starting Lex, but I didnt really have a desire before the Lex either so it doesnt bother me much, we still have sex about the same amount as before and I do enjoy it once I get into it.

#7 WeirdBeard

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Posted 30 September 2008 - 01:04 PM

From everything that I have read, the main thing is to give it time. It may take up to 4 months for the sexual side effects to diminish. Some report that it goes away much sooner.

There are other meds and supplements that may help. The ones I see mentioned the most often are Wellbutrin (drug) and Mucuna pruriens (supplement). But some of the ED drugs may help as well.

Since I don't currently have a partner, it doesn't bother me much. It actually may be a bit of a relief to have less of a drive right now while I am getting better. But that is just me. If sex is important to you, I would take a close look at what can be done to get past this side effect.

#8 livingwithBPD

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 05:59 AM

My interest in sex has increased. My husband says its for worse :hearts:

#9 tilley

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Posted 17 October 2008 - 02:48 PM

Hello everyone,

I'm on Lexapro and suffer from several of the sexual side-effects. Some of them are a blessing in disguise, as I've suffered from Premature Ejaculation since I've had depression. The main problem is difficulty in reaching orgasm. I've read that adding Bupropion or Buspirone can help overcome this. Has anyone tried either of these additions? If so, which helped the most with this issue? Thanks!


I am thankful for your post. I have tried escitalopram and citalopram and while they manage my depression, the sexual side effects were very discouraging, no matter how low the dose. My sexual side effects were very similar to those described by others - inability to orgasm (it just doesn't happen no matter what) and a lack of interest. Buproprion is an excellent drug for sexual side effects...none at all. Since I am not adequately managed with my depression with buproprion alone (my symptoms of depression are slowly creeping up in the absence of escitalopram for 4 weeks), I am seeking the best combination of meds for me to allow for a good AD effect AND a satisfying sexual life. Today my doctor prescribed trazodone 25mg. I am reluctant to start it, but know that it is necessary so that my symptoms of depression do not get out-of-control. I have read other posts about trazodone and it sounds encouraging. I am also currently trying to conceive so and concerned about meds and fetal health. Any advice is appreciated. Tilley

#10 BadGirlBlues

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Posted 22 October 2008 - 09:24 AM

Strange, I have an INCREASED sex drive on 20 mg Lexapro, and no problem with the Big O. I had been on Paxil, which totally killed my sex drive, so I had expected the same from the Lex, and didn't even care. When my personal options are: no sex drive due to meds, or savoring suicidal thoughts (complete with clever plans) on no meds, I'll take no sex drive every time.

#11 TedStan

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 12:14 AM

Started on Celexa about a year ago. Currently at 15mg. Been up to 20 but it turned me into a zombie... had a bad case of CRS (couldn't remember crap). Anyway about the first three weeks I was on Celexa, happy endings were out of the question. Argued with the Doc about getting on something else. He insisted I stay with it... About week 4 the plumbing started working again.. Now days I occasionally fail to achieve the happy ending but overall I have no complaints & I'm glad the doc made me stick with it. My advice... Be Patient & give your body time to adjust.... Big problem is I have gained 60 pounds in about five months and couldn't stop eating if I had to..

#12 zida

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 02:43 AM

I'm on celexa. I can't remember having orgasm since I started this med 2 months ago?!? I still enjoy regular sex with my husband, but never get the goods :) How long does this take to overcome?

#13 happy days 08

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 10:06 AM

I have half the problem. I have a huge sex drive now, which I didn't have on Prozac or Zoloft, but I can't orgasm for the life of me. It just takes too freakin long, and by that time, I'm just exhausted.
Hard as it may be sometimes, have faith! Happy Days 08

#14 kirkwuk

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 04:26 PM

You may be comforted to know the sexual side effects may disappear after a month or so. That depends on how anxious you get about never overcoming them.
Beating depression since 2007

#15 safetyfast

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Posted 12 November 2008 - 06:26 AM

I discussed my concerns with my wife, who was very understanding, and within a short time, the side effect subsided. I don't know if it was due to adjustment to the meds, or because I stopped worrying about it, or both.

#16 mint

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Posted 14 November 2008 - 01:57 PM

I've been on 40mg of citalopram for 3 years now and my sex drive is erratic. It never seems to improve. It doesn't matter how understanding your partner is,it creates tension.
The truth never set me free.

#17 elvenstrawberry

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Posted 17 November 2008 - 10:02 PM

I'm on lexapro as well (15mg) and have experienced sexual side effects. Since my depression had an effect on this even before I went on medication, it's pretty much nil at this point. My physician has started me on wellbutrin, since it is meant to diminish the sexual side effects as well as to boost the AD effects of the lexapro, since it wasn't enough on its own. I've been on Lexapro for less than four months, so I can't say whether it'll go away on its own. I've been on the wellbutrin for two weeks now. Nothing yet, but I suppose we'll see.

It does suck though. Honestly at the moment it just makes me frustrated socially (and consequently more depressed), so I understand what you're going through.

#18 wyldorchids

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Posted 25 November 2008 - 12:26 AM

i am on celexa and well, Sex?? whats that. ive lost all urge and care for it. much less feelings. and im a girl, so its not just the guys. and since im on a pill that makes me not give a D*m*, i dont. lol if i feel like making hubby happy i do, i get nothing from it im sorry to say.

Edited by wyldorchids, 25 November 2008 - 12:27 AM.


#19 happy days 08

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Posted 01 December 2008 - 11:14 AM

I take Lex 20mg, and that plus Ativan (of all things) makes me roaring to go whenever the oppurtunity presents itself. My situation is a little different, because I was so depressed before that I didnt want to have sex. Now, at least I can be in the mood more often.
Hard as it may be sometimes, have faith! Happy Days 08

#20 Acoaller

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Posted 01 December 2008 - 12:42 PM

Hello everyone,

I'm on Lexapro and suffer from several of the sexual side-effects. Some of them are a blessing in disguise, as I've suffered from Premature Ejaculation since I've had depression. The main problem is difficulty in reaching orgasm. I've read that adding Bupropion or Buspirone can help overcome this. Has anyone tried either of these additions? If so, which helped the most with this issue? Thanks!


I am thankful for your post. I have tried escitalopram and citalopram and while they manage my depression, the sexual side effects were very discouraging, no matter how low the dose. My sexual side effects were very similar to those described by others - inability to orgasm (it just doesn't happen no matter what) and a lack of interest. Buproprion is an excellent drug for sexual side effects...none at all. Since I am not adequately managed with my depression with buproprion alone (my symptoms of depression are slowly creeping up in the absence of escitalopram for 4 weeks), I am seeking the best combination of meds for me to allow for a good AD effect AND a satisfying sexual life. Today my doctor prescribed trazodone 25mg. I am reluctant to start it, but know that it is necessary so that my symptoms of depression do not get out-of-control. I have read other posts about trazodone and it sounds encouraging. I am also currently trying to conceive so and concerned about meds and fetal health. Any advice is appreciated. Tilley

Most of SSRI-s (citaloprame etc) causing sexual side effects on the 40 % of the patients by the literature. Majority of people I know who takes SSRI-s complaining problems with lowered libido etc. I had only slightly noticed such effects on me (I had been on most SSRI-s). Now I am on Reversible MAOI: Aurorix (moclobemide) unfortunately forbidden by FDA in the USA. Aurorix don’t suppress libido even vice versa. Again I cannot suggest your meds, some of them work on Depression some not, and it is individual. I know it by my experience too because have resistent serious depression for about 18 years.

#21 kirkwuk

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Posted 02 December 2008 - 06:25 PM

I'm on lexapro as well (15mg) and have experienced sexual side effects. Since my depression had an effect on this even before I went on medication, it's pretty much nil at this point. My physician has started me on wellbutrin, since it is meant to diminish the sexual side effects as well as to boost the AD effects of the lexapro, since it wasn't enough on its own. I've been on Lexapro for less than four months, so I can't say whether it'll go away on its own. I've been on the wellbutrin for two weeks now. Nothing yet, but I suppose we'll see.

It does suck though. Honestly at the moment it just makes me frustrated socially (and consequently more depressed), so I understand what you're going through.


I was on pills of which the side effects were numb hands. I didn't worry too much although the situation was horrible for me because I couldn't play guitar properly. After about three months I didn't notice it any more.

So side effects can go, just distract yourself from getting anxious about them and you may find everything's fine given time.

Edited by kirkwuk, 02 December 2008 - 06:25 PM.

Beating depression since 2007

#22 ad12

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Posted 19 December 2008 - 11:17 PM

hey everybody ,great discussion, i thinks its real important to discuss because lack of sex drive can end up causing worse depression than you started out with so its a real tough situation!!
i was formerly on lexapro and had the sexual side effects and yes i did try the wellbutrin with it and it helped.
then I felt the wellbutrin made me a bit overanxious and i ended up going off both and eventually switched to effexor.
effexor seems a bit better for me although im still feeling the sexual SE. soooo ive been doing a lot of research on natural supplements and its seems by far the most promising is TONGKAT ALI. or {eurycoma longifolia} aka longjack. people claim it raises the level of free testosterone and can dramatically raise libido and sexual performance.. it was known as the asian viagra buts its a natural plant root
with no known harmful side effects except maybe some irritability and possible restlessness.
according to research it safely raises testosterone without the scary side effects of synthetic steroids, allegedly it stimulates the leydig cells of the testes to produce more test. so im trying to figure out if its safe and effective when used along with ssri meds?????? anyone have any clue?? so far i havent found out.. i have been trying it this week in small doses and my libido does seem improved.. its been used traditionally in se asia for centuries now its being mass produced and standardized.
i plan to ask my doctor soon.. maybe some of you can ask your doctors or help me research this since to me at least for guys over 30 or 40 when their testosterone starts decreasing this seems like it could be a good possibility to overcome this SE of ssri meds!!! ps it has many other uses too including burning fat and building muscle so hey what do you know
theres another major ssri side effect that this may be able to conquer the dreaded 'LEXAFAT!!!!!!!????
:hearts: :flowers:













I'm on lexapro as well (15mg) and have experienced sexual side effects. Since my depression had an effect on this even before I went on medication, it's pretty much nil at this point. My physician has started me on wellbutrin, since it is meant to diminish the sexual side effects as well as to boost the AD effects of the lexapro, since it wasn't enough on its own. I've been on Lexapro for less than four months, so I can't say whether it'll go away on its own. I've been on the wellbutrin for two weeks now. Nothing yet, but I suppose we'll see.

It does suck though. Honestly at the moment it just makes me frustrated socially (and consequently more depressed), so I understand what you're going through.


I was on pills of which the side effects were numb hands. I didn't worry too much although the situation was horrible for me because I couldn't play guitar properly. After about three months I didn't notice it any more.

So side effects can go, just distract yourself from getting anxious about them and you may find everything's fine given time.



#23 happy days 08

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Posted 20 December 2008 - 04:41 PM

I hadn't even heard about it. Are you just trying to find out if it is safe with your meds? If so, your doc would be the best place to start.
Hard as it may be sometimes, have faith! Happy Days 08

#24 happy days 08

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Posted 21 December 2008 - 01:10 PM

Have you had a chance to talk to your doctor about the safety of combining the two? I would be interested to hear the results.
Hard as it may be sometimes, have faith! Happy Days 08

#25 ad12

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Posted 21 December 2008 - 03:38 PM

Have you had a chance to talk to your doctor about the safety of combining the two? I would be interested to hear the results.

not yet i have a dr apt in a few weeks , mid january so i guess ill have to wait a bit but ill def keep all you guys posted
take care

#26 rel7

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Posted 26 December 2008 - 07:33 AM

Good luck on this. I hope you can get around this issue which I think is a major problem with some of these drugs.

I was on Celexa which is the older form of Lexapro and I lost my sex drive and could not reach big O if my life depended on it. I was depressed but having no sex drive or ability to do anything sexual made me feel even more depressed. I tried sticking with it because there was a chance that the effects would pass as my body adjusted but after several months, there was no adjustment. It just got worse. Since I was already feeling lower on it than I did before I started it, I gave up. I just couldn't go on being like that and I was only on 20mg. It's as if I had to choose between not being depressed or never having sex again. Sorry but I'd like to have sex again. So no Celexa for me. I won't go within 100 miles of lexapro. It seems to be the same story. But everyone is different and hopefully you will respond for the better with it.

Edited by rel7, 26 December 2008 - 07:34 AM.





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