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Citalopram - Fatigue & Sex Drive - Help!


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9 replies to this topic

#1 crybabyskater

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Posted 12 October 2009 - 07:25 AM

Hi all. I have been on Citalopram for 6 months now (20mg a day). I take them for anxiety, and altho I personally haven't noticed a huge difference in myself, my friends and family say I am a different person since I have been on them. I guess this is what counts.

I am finding that they make me incrediably fatigued and sleepy tho. Waking/getting up in the morning is so hard, and come mid afternoon I really am fighting to stay awake. I feel like a bit of zombie and its had a big impact on my social life and actvities. The other main side effect I have noticed is my sex drive is pretty non existant. I always had a very healthy one before, so this is rather annoying too (especially for my partner who is very supportive).

Has anyone else experienced either symptoms? I've read up on them and it seems both can fairly common, but they're both so bad that I am thinking about coming off the tablets. I was kind of hoping that after 6 months these side effects would have petered out, but it would seem they are here to stay (and even to a degree getting worse!)

Can anyone offer any advice or confirm that this is normal. Many thanks in advance. :hearts:

#2 Deepster

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Posted 12 October 2009 - 09:33 AM

Hi all. I have been on Citalopram for 6 months now (20mg a day). I take them for anxiety, and altho I personally haven't noticed a huge difference in myself, my friends and family say I am a different person since I have been on them. I guess this is what counts.

I am finding that they make me incrediably fatigued and sleepy tho. Waking/getting up in the morning is so hard, and come mid afternoon I really am fighting to stay awake. I feel like a bit of zombie and its had a big impact on my social life and actvities. The other main side effect I have noticed is my sex drive is pretty non existant. I always had a very healthy one before, so this is rather annoying too (especially for my partner who is very supportive).

Has anyone else experienced either symptoms? I've read up on them and it seems both can fairly common, but they're both so bad that I am thinking about coming off the tablets. I was kind of hoping that after 6 months these side effects would have petered out, but it would seem they are here to stay (and even to a degree getting worse!)

Can anyone offer any advice or confirm that this is normal. Many thanks in advance. :hearts:


Hi Crybabyskater-

I can completely relate to what you are experiencing. I had these same SEs on Celexa, plus many more much worse SEs. After 3mos. the sexual dysfunction had not abated, nor the fatique. I was switched to pristiq which has worked much better for me. You might want to talk to your pdoc and see if she/he feels that an SNRI might be better on your functioning.

Best wishes!

Deepster
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#3 crybabyskater

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 05:16 AM

thank you deepster. i appreciate your words and taking the time to reply. :)

#4 DommyKeay18

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 08:36 AM

Hi all. I have been on Citalopram for 6 months now (20mg a day). I take them for anxiety, and altho I personally haven't noticed a huge difference in myself, my friends and family say I am a different person since I have been on them. I guess this is what counts.

I am finding that they make me incrediably fatigued and sleepy tho. Waking/getting up in the morning is so hard, and come mid afternoon I really am fighting to stay awake. I feel like a bit of zombie and its had a big impact on my social life and actvities. The other main side effect I have noticed is my sex drive is pretty non existant. I always had a very healthy one before, so this is rather annoying too (especially for my partner who is very supportive).

Has anyone else experienced either symptoms? I've read up on them and it seems both can fairly common, but they're both so bad that I am thinking about coming off the tablets. I was kind of hoping that after 6 months these side effects would have petered out, but it would seem they are here to stay (and even to a degree getting worse!)

Can anyone offer any advice or confirm that this is normal. Many thanks in advance. :hearts:


Yes exactly the same for me too (also on 20ml) The mornings are hellish getting out of bed is a constant burden. I'm okay after an hour or so then again like you in the afternoon there is a big crash weighing up the pros and cons though i'm glad that i'm on them.

#5 kirkwuk

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Posted 17 October 2009 - 04:50 AM

Hi all. I have been on Citalopram for 6 months now (20mg a day). I take them for anxiety, and altho I personally haven't noticed a huge difference in myself, my friends and family say I am a different person since I have been on them. I guess this is what counts.

I am finding that they make me incrediably fatigued and sleepy tho. Waking/getting up in the morning is so hard, and come mid afternoon I really am fighting to stay awake. I feel like a bit of zombie and its had a big impact on my social life and actvities. The other main side effect I have noticed is my sex drive is pretty non existant. I always had a very healthy one before, so this is rather annoying too (especially for my partner who is very supportive).

Has anyone else experienced either symptoms? I've read up on them and it seems both can fairly common, but they're both so bad that I am thinking about coming off the tablets. I was kind of hoping that after 6 months these side effects would have petered out, but it would seem they are here to stay (and even to a degree getting worse!)

Can anyone offer any advice or confirm that this is normal. Many thanks in advance. :hearts:


I didn't get either personally, but I know people that have and they told me it those side effects just wore off over time. Try not to think of them too much.
Beating depression since 2007

#6 blackcompe

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Posted 17 October 2009 - 05:27 AM

Hi crybabyskater,

SSRI's are infamous for sexual side effects via it's serotonergic properties. Trazadone, Nefazodone, and Mirtazapine are the best anti-depressants for patients concerned about sexual side effects, although they may not be as effective at treating anxiety. They do not agonize serotonin receptors, which is known to cause decreased libido. Also SSRI's can cause sedation through its actions at the serotonin pre-synaptic autoreceptors, although it's not typically a problem for patients. If sedation is a problem, the best action may be to switch to an SNRI—Cymbalta, Pristiq, Effexor or Wellbutrin, an NDRI. Everyone has different experiences with these drugs. Throughout my experience with several medications, I'd say SSRI's have more tolerable sexual side effects than SNRI's. SSRI's usually carry less anxiety too. SNRI's killed my libido. I hope that helps. Good luck.

Edited by blackcompe, 17 October 2009 - 05:49 AM.

This information is of a general nature and is not intended to be used as medical advice. I am not a practicing physician. Please use this information at your own risk.

#7 jimbow15

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Posted 17 October 2009 - 05:40 AM

Hi Hi crybabyskater,

Yes I am on Citalopram for years now and this problem still persists. I have gotten a bit better in the libido department and I don't suffer from Fatigue.

Exercise, diet and keeping fit mentally will all help improve your life and in time the rest will improve.

Best Wishes

Jim Bow
"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed." Albert E.


Information supplied on Depression Forums by members should not be relied upon and is not a substitute for medical advice from a health professional or doctor.

#8 shio

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Posted 17 October 2009 - 12:12 PM

Hi crybabyskater,
Yes i have heard of others with the same side effects, in fact a close friend of mine hates not having an active sex life.
I've been on citalopram for about 4 months and haven't experienced any of the side effects.
I agree with Jim Bow "Exercise, diet and keeping fit mentally will all help improve your life and in time the rest will improve."
It takes time but it works in the long run
I haven't experienced the fatique but there again i take my meds at night and it seems to help me sleep better.
But there again.... all meds affect everyone differently.
Peace out and take care
Shio
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#9 justtryin2feelbetter

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 10:40 AM

Hi all. I have been on Citalopram for 6 months now (20mg a day). I take them for anxiety, and altho I personally haven't noticed a huge difference in myself, my friends and family say I am a different person since I have been on them. I guess this is what counts.

I am finding that they make me incrediably fatigued and sleepy tho. Waking/getting up in the morning is so hard, and come mid afternoon I really am fighting to stay awake. I feel like a bit of zombie and its had a big impact on my social life and actvities. The other main side effect I have noticed is my sex drive is pretty non existant. I always had a very healthy one before, so this is rather annoying too (especially for my partner who is very supportive).

Has anyone else experienced either symptoms? I've read up on them and it seems both can fairly common, but they're both so bad that I am thinking about coming off the tablets. I was kind of hoping that after 6 months these side effects would have petered out, but it would seem they are here to stay (and even to a degree getting worse!)

Can anyone offer any advice or confirm that this is normal. Many thanks in advance. :shocked:



Hello, just wanted to add my two cents here. I started taking 20mg of Citalopram about a month ago and I hate it. I am always tired, always. My husband told me last night that I look like a walking zombie. I am always falling asleep. If I sit down to watch something on tv, I'm going to fall asleep. I used to get up and run before work and now I can't even get up when I have to to. And my sex drive has totally gone out the window. I just got married in Feb. so it's a little too soon for that to be happening. :) Before this, I took 50mg of Zoloft, but my Dr. said the Citalopram is a "cleaner" drug and she wanted me to try it. I know everyone is different, but the Zoloft did what it was supposed to do without the annoying side effects so if you're looking to change, I would def. recommend trying it. Thanks and good luck!

#10 AmyJa

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 12:29 AM

Hi CryBabySkater,
SSRI antidepressants like Citalopram supposed to make people feel better, but an unfortunate side effect of these drugs is that they can interfere with sexual response and sensitivity.

You might consider trying the over-the-counter arousal oil called Zestra, which has been shown to be safe and effective for women using SSRI anti-depressants. Two placebo-controlled studies published in the Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy showed that this blend of botanicals (including borage seed and evening primrose oils, Angelica root and vitamins C and E) provided a significant increase in arousal, desire, genital stimulation, ability to orgasm and pleasure. The treatment worked equally well on women using SSRI antidepressant medications. Of course, talk with your doctor first before trying anything, and do not stop taking your antidepressant medications.




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