Generic name: Citalopram.

Celexa is an antidepressant. It increases the concentration of certain chemicals responsible for brain nerve transmission. 

Quick Facts About Celexa


Used to treat major depression — continuing depression that interferes with daily functioning, such as changes in appetite, sleep habits, and mind or body coordination, decreased sex drive, increased fatigue, feelings of guilt or worthlessness, difficulty concentrating, slowed thinking, suicidal thoughts. Also used to treat post-stroke crying disorder, diabetic neuropathy, dementia, and alcoholism.

Celexa Dosage

Take with or without food, and at the same time every day. Follow doctor’s instructions carefully for stopping Celexa. Do not stop medication if there is no immediate effect; can take 1 to 4 weeks to see improvement

  • Usual adult dose: 20 to 40 milligrams once per day. Doctor may increase dose up to 60 milligrams. For diabetic neuropathy and alcoholism — 40 milligrams once per day.
  • Usual child dose: not generally prescribed for children.
  • Missed dose: take as soon as possible, unless almost time for next dose. In that case, do not take missed dose; go back to regular schedule. Do not double doses.

Celexa Side Effects

Overdose symptoms:

amnesia, coma, confusion, convulsions, cyanosis, dizziness, extreme drowsiness, hyperventilation, ECG changes, nausea, sweating, tremor, vomiting. If you suspect an overdose, immediately seek medical attention.

More common side effects: abnormal ejaculation, coughing, diarrhea, drowsiness, dry mouth, fatigue, increased sweating, insomnia, nausea, sinus inflammation, tremor, upper respiratory tract infection, upset stomach.

Less common Celexa side effects: abdominal pain, abnormal glucose tolerance, abnormally fast heartbeat, abnormal walking, acne, aggravated depression, agitation, alcohol intolerance, anemia, anorexia, anxiety, apathy, appetite changes, arthritis, belching, breast pain or enlargement, bronchitis, bruising, chills, coma, confusion, conjunctivitis (pinkeye), decreased sex drive, decreased sensitivity to touch, difficult or painful urination, difficulty breathing, difficulty swallowing, dizziness, dry eyes, dry skin, eczema, excess milk production, eye pain, fainting, fever, flu-like symptoms, gas, gingivitis, hemorrhoids, hot flushes, impotence, increased alkaline phosphatase, increased sensitivity to light, increased sweating, inflamed esophagus, joint or muscle pain, leg cramps, liver problems, loss of menstrual flow, loss of muscle control, low blood pressure, lymph node disease, migraine, muscle weakness, neuralgia, nosebleed, painful menstruation, “pins and needles,” pneumonia, psoriasis, rash, ringing in ears, skin discoloration, sinus infection, skeletal pain, stiff muscles, stomach and intestinal inflammation, suicide attempt, taste changes, teeth grinding, tension in arteries or muscles, thirst, urinary frequency or incontinence, vaginal hemorrhage, vomiting, weight changes, yawning. Rare side effects: abnormal heartbeat, abnormal pupil dilation, abnormal tearing, aggressive reactions, angina, asthma, bilirubinemia, blood clot disorders, breast development in males, cataracts, catatonic reaction, cellulitis, change in white blood cell count, colitis, cornea inflammation or pain, decreased sweating, dehydration, delusion, depersonalization, double vision, drooping eyelids, drug dependence, euphoria, excess hair growth, flushing, goiter, gums bleeding, hallucinations, hay fever, heart attack, heartburn, heart failure, hepatitis, hiccups, high blood pressure, incoordination, increased sensitivity to touch, increased sex drive, inflammation of tongue, jaundice, kidney problems, laryngitis, low blood sugar, melancholia, obesity, osteoporosis, paranoia, potassium depletion, psychosis, rectal bleeding, slow heartbeat, swelling of arms and legs, stupor, thyroid problems, ulcer.


Do not take if you have taken mao inhibitors such as Nardil and Parnate within the past 2 weeks; can cause serious or fatal reaction.

Inform your doctor before combining Celexa with:

antibiotics such as erythromycin and clarithromycin (Biaxin); antifungals such as ketoconazole (Nizoral), itraconazole (Sporanox). and miconazole (Monistat); beta-blockers such as metropolol (Lopressor); carbamazepine (Tegretol): central nervous system depressants such as Xanax and Valium; cimetidine (Tagamet); lithium; tricyclic antidepressants such as imipramine (Tofranil).

Avoid use of alcohol. 

Special Cautions

If pregnant or planning to become pregnant, inform your doctor immediately. Appears in breast milk: could affect a nursing infant.

Seniors may be prescribed a lower dose.

Not generally prescribed for children.

  • May impair your ability to drive a car or operate machinery. Do not take part in any activity that requires mental alertness until adjusted to medication.
  • Avoid use if recovering from a heart attack.
  • Use with caution if you have a history of: narrow-angle glaucoma; difficulty urinating; heart, liver, kidney, or thyroid diseases; seizures.
  • May cause sensitivity to sunlight


HealthSurvey.org provides accurate and independent information prescription pills, over-the-counter medicines and natural products. This material is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you have questions about  dosage, or Celexa side effects, please contact your healthcare provider.