Spl Medguide Section
Citalopram Tablets, USP
Read the Medication Guide that comes with citalopram before you start taking it and each time you get a refill. There may be new information. This Medication Guide does not take the place of talking to your healthcare provider about your medical condition or treatment. Talk with your healthcare provider if there is something you do not understand or want to learn more about.
What is the most important information I should know about citalopram tablets?
Citalopram and other antidepressant medicines may cause serious side effects, including:
1. Suicidal thoughts or actions:
- Citalopram and other antidepressant medicines may increase suicidal thoughts or actions in some children, teenagers, or young adults within the first few months of treatment or when the dose is changed.
- Depression or other serious mental illnesses are the most important causes of suicidal thoughts or actions.
- Watch for these changes and call your healthcare provider right away if you notice:
- New or sudden changes in mood, behavior, actions, thoughts, or feelings, especially if severe.
- Pay particular attention to such changes when citalopram is started or when the dose is changed.
Keep all follow-up visits with your healthcare provider and call between visits if you are worried about symptoms.
Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms, or call 911 if an emergency, especially if they are new, worse, or worry you:
- attempts to commit suicide
- acting on dangerous impulses
- acting aggressive or violent
- thoughts about suicide or dying
- new or worse depression
- new or worse anxiety or panic attacks
- feeling agitated, restless, angry or irritable
- trouble sleeping
- an increase in activity or talking more than what is normal for you
- other unusual changes in behavior or mood
Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms, or call 911 if an emergency. Citalopram may be associated with these serious side effects:
2. Changes in the electrical activity of your heart (QT prolongation and Torsade de Pointes).
This condition can be life threatening. The symptoms may include:
- chest pain
- fast or slow heartbeat
- shortness of breath
- dizziness or fainting
3. Serotonin Syndrome or Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome-like reactions. This condition can be life-threatening and may include:
- agitation, hallucinations, coma or other changes in mental status
- coordination problems or muscle twitching (overactive reflexes)
- racing heartbeat, high or low blood pressure
- sweating or fever
- nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
- muscle rigidity
4. Severe allergic reactions:
- trouble breathing
- swelling of the face, tongue, eyes or mouth
- rash, itchy welts (hives) or blisters, alone or with fever or joint pain
5. Abnormal bleeding: Citalopram tablets and other antidepressant medicines may increase your risk of bleeding or bruising, especially if you take the blood thinner warfarin (Coumadin®, Jantoven®), a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAIDs, like ibuprofen or naproxen), or aspirin.
6. Seizures or convulsions
7. Manic episodes:
- greatly increased energy
- severe trouble sleeping
- racing thoughts
- reckless behavior
- excessive happiness or irritability
- talking more or faster than usual
8. Changes in appetite or weight. Children and adolescents should have height and weight monitored during treatment.
9. Low salt (sodium) levels in the blood. Elderly people may be at greater risk for this.
- weakness or feeling unsteady
- confusion, problems concentrating or thinking or memory problems
Do not stop Citalopram without first talking to your healthcare provider. Stopping Citalopram too quickly may cause serious symptoms including:
- anxiety, irritability, high or low mood, feeling restless or changes in sleep habits
- headache, sweating, nausea, dizziness
- electric shock-like sensations, shaking, confusion
What is Citalopram?
Citalopram is a prescription medicine used to treat depression. It is important to talk with your healthcare provider about the risks of treating depression and also the risks of not treating it. You should discuss all treatment choices with your healthcare provider. Citalopram is also used to treat:
- Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)
Talk to your healthcare provider if you do not think that your condition is getting better with citalopram treatment.
Who should not take Citalopram?
Do not take Citalopram if you:
- are allergic to citalopram hydrobromide or escitalopram oxalate or any of the ingredients in citalopram. See the end of this Medication Guide for a complete list of ingredients in citalopram.
- take a Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitor (MAOI). Ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist if you are not sure if you take an MAOI, including the antibiotic linezolid.
- Do not take an MAOI within 14 days of stopping citalopram.
- Do not start citalopram if you stopped taking an MAOI in the last 14 days.
People who take citalopram close in time to an MAOI may have serious or even life-threatening side effects. Get medical help right away if you have any of these symptoms:
- high fever
- uncontrolled muscle spasms
- stiff muscles
- rapid changes in heart rate or blood pressure
- loss of consciousness (pass out)
- take the antipsychotic medicine pimozide (Orap®) because this can cause serious heart problems
- have a heart problem including congenital long QT syndrome
What should I tell my healthcare provider before taking citalopram tablets? Ask if you are not sure.
Before starting citalopram tablets, tell your healthcare provider if you
- Are taking certain drugs such as:
- Medicines for heart problems
- Medicines that lower your potassium or magnesium levels in your body
- Triptans used to treat migraine headache
- Medicines used to treat mood, anxiety, psychotic or thought disorders, including tricyclics, lithium, SSRIs, SNRIs, or antipsychotics
- Over-the-counter supplements such as tryptophan or St. John’s Wort
- have liver problems
- have kidney problems
- have heart problems
- have or had seizures or convulsions
- have bipolar disorder or mania
- have low sodium levels in your blood
- have a history of a stroke
- have high blood pressure
- have or had bleeding problems
- are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if citalopram will harm your unborn baby. Talk to your healthcare provider about the benefits and risks of treating depression during pregnancy
- are breast-feeding or plan to breast-feed. Some citalopram may pass into your breast milk. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best way to feed your baby while taking citalopram tablets.
Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines that you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Citalopram and some medicines may interact with each other, may not work as well, or may cause serious side effects.
Your healthcare provider or pharmacist can tell you if it is safe to take citalopram tablets with your other medicines. Do not start or stop any medicine while taking citalopram tablets without talking to your healthcare provider first.