Generic Name: escitalopram (ES-sye-TAL-oh-pram)
Brand Name: Lexapro
Antidepressants may increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or actions in children, teenagers, and young adults. However, depression and certain other mental problems may also increase the risk of suicide. Talk with the patient's doctor to be sure that the benefits of using Lexapro solution outweigh the risks.
Families and caregivers must closely watch patients who take Lexapro solution. It is important to keep in close contact with the patient's doctor. Tell the doctor right away if the patient has symptoms like worsened depression, suicidal thoughts, or changes in behavior. Discuss any questions with the patient's doctor.
Lexapro solution is used for:
Treating depression or generalized anxiety disorder. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Lexapro solution is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). It works by restoring the balance of serotonin, a natural substance in the brain, which helps to improve certain mood problems.
Do NOT use Lexapro solution if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in Lexapro solution or to citalopram
- you have a certain type of irregular heartbeat (long QT syndrome) or uncorrected low blood potassium or magnesium levels
- you are taking citalopram
- you are taking or have taken linezolid, a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) (eg, phenelzine, selegiline), or St. John's wort within the last 14 days
- you are taking a fenfluramine derivative (eg, dexfenfluramine), nefazodone, pimozide, serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) (eg, duloxetine, venlafaxine), sibutramine, other SSRIs (eg, fluoxetine, paroxetine), or tryptophan
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using Lexapro solution:
Some medical conditions may interact with Lexapro solution. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
- if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
- if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
- if you or a family member has a history of bipolar disorder (manic-depression), other mental or mood problems, suicidal thoughts or attempts, or alcohol or substance abuse
- if you have a history of seizures, liver problems, kidney problems, heart problems (eg, heart failure, slow or irregular heartbeat), high blood pressure, stroke, bleeding problems, stomach or bowel bleeding, or metabolism problems
- if you have a condition or take medicine that may increase your risk for low potassium or magnesium levels. Check with your doctor if you are not sure if any of your conditions or medicines may increase this risk
- if you are dehydrated, have low blood volume or low blood sodium levels, or drink alcohol
- if you will be having electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)
- if you take any medicine that may increase the risk of a certain type of irregular heartbeat (prolonged QT interval). Check with your doctor or pharmacist if you are unsure if any of your medicines may increase the risk of this type of irregular heartbeat
- if you are taking a medicine that contains methylene blue
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Lexapro solution. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:
- Buspirone, fenfluramine derivatives (eg, dexfenfluramine), fentanyl, linezolid, lithium, MAOIs (eg, phenelzine, selegiline), meperidine, metoclopramide, nefazodone, serotonin 5-HT1 receptor agonists (eg, sumatriptan), sibutramine, SNRIs (eg, duloxetine, venlafaxine), other SSRIs (eg, fluoxetine, paroxetine), St. John's wort, trazodone, or tryptophan because severe side effects, such as a reaction that may include agitation, blood pressure changes, coma, confusion, delirium, fever, irritability, mental changes, and rigid muscles, may occur
- Anticoagulants (eg, warfarin), aspirin, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) (eg, ibuprofen) because the risk of bleeding, including stomach bleeding, may be increased
- Diuretics (eg, furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide) because the risk of low blood sodium levels may be increased
- Tramadol because the risk of seizures may be increased
- Arsenic, cimetidine, halofantrine, nilotinib, omeprazole, phenothiazines (eg, chlorpromazine, thioridazine), pimozide, or vandetanib because the risk of irregular heartbeat may be increased
- Carbamazepine or cyproheptadine because they may decrease Lexapro solution's effectiveness
- Aripiprazole, beta-blockers (eg, propranolol), clozapine, risperidone, or tricyclic antidepressants (eg, amitriptyline) because the risk of their side effects may be increased by Lexapro solution
This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Lexapro solution may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.
How to use Lexapro solution:
Use Lexapro solution as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- Lexapro solution comes with an extra patient information sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it carefully. Read it again each time you get Lexapro solution refilled.
- Take Lexapro solution by mouth with or without food.
- Use a measuring device marked for medicine dosing. Ask your pharmacist for help if you are unsure of how to measure your dose.
- Taking Lexapro solution at the same time each day will help you remember to take it.
- Continue to take Lexapro solution even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
- Do not suddenly stop taking Lexapro solution without checking with your doctor. Side effects may occur. They may include mental or mood changes, numbness or tingling of the skin, dizziness, confusion, headache, trouble sleeping, or unusual tiredness. You will be closely monitored when you start Lexapro solution and whenever a change in dose is made.
- If you miss a dose of Lexapro solution, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Lexapro solution.
Important safety information:
- Lexapro solution may cause drowsiness or dizziness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Lexapro solution with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
- Do not drink alcohol while you are using Lexapro solution.
- Check with your doctor before you use medicines that may cause drowsiness (eg, sleep aids, muscle relaxers) while you are using Lexapro solution; it may add to their effects. Ask your pharmacist if you have questions about which medicines may cause drowsiness.
- One to 4 weeks may pass before your symptoms improve. Do NOT take more than the recommended dose, change your dose, or use Lexapro solution for longer than prescribed without checking with your doctor.
- Children, teenagers, and young adults who take Lexapro solution may be at increased risk for suicidal thoughts or actions. Watch all patients who take Lexapro solution closely. Contact the doctor at once if new, worsened, or sudden symptoms such as depressed mood; anxious, restless, or irritable behavior; panic attacks; or any unusual change in mood or behavior occur. Contact the doctor right away if any signs of suicidal thoughts or actions occur.
- Lexapro solution and a medicine called citalopram have the same active ingredient. Do not take Lexapro solution if you are also taking citalopram.
- If your doctor tells you to stop taking Lexapro solution, you will need to wait for several weeks before beginning to take certain other medicines (eg, MAOIs, nefazodone). Ask your doctor when you should start to take your new medicines after you have stopped taking Lexapro solution.
- Lexapro solution may rarely cause a prolonged, painful erection. This could happen even when you are not having sex. If this is not treated right away, it could lead to permanent sexual problems such as impotence. Contact your doctor right away if this happens.
- Serotonin syndrome is a possibly fatal syndrome that can be caused by Lexapro solution. Your risk may be greater if you take Lexapro solution with certain other medicines (eg, "triptans," MAOIs). Symptoms may include agitation; confusion; hallucinations; coma; fever; fast or irregular heartbeat; tremor; excessive sweating; and nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea. Contact your doctor at once if you have any of these symptoms.
- Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) is a possibly fatal syndrome that can be caused by Lexapro solution. Symptoms may include fever; stiff muscles; confusion; abnormal thinking; fast or irregular heartbeat; and sweating. Contact your doctor at once if you have any of these symptoms.
- Use Lexapro solution with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially low blood sodium levels.
- Caution is advised when using Lexapro solution in CHILDREN; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially increased risk of suicidal thoughts or actions.
- Lexapro solution should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN younger than 12 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
- Lexapro solution may cause weight changes. CHILDREN and teenagers may need regular weight and growth checks while they take Lexapro solution.
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: Lexapro solution may cause harm to the fetus if it is used during the last 3 months of pregnancy. If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using Lexapro solution while you are pregnant. Lexapro solution is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Lexapro solution.
Possible side effects of Lexapro solution:
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Constipation; decreased sexual desire or ability; diarrhea; dizziness; drowsiness; dry mouth; headache; increased sweating; light-headedness when you stand or sit up; loss of appetite; nausea; stomach upset; tiredness; trouble sleeping.
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); bizarre behavior; black or bloody stools; chest pain; confusion; decreased concentration; decreased coordination; fainting; fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat; hallucinations; memory loss; menstrual period changes; new or worsening agitation, panic attacks, aggressiveness, impulsiveness, irritability, hostility, exaggerated feeling of well-being, restlessness, or inability to sit still; persistent or severe ringing in the ears;persistent, painful erection; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin; seizures; severe dizziness; severe or persistent anxiety or trouble sleeping; severe or persistent headache; shortness of breath; stomach pain; suicidal thoughts or attempts; tremor; unusual bruising or bleeding; unusual or severe mental or mood changes; unusual weakness; vision changes; worsening of depression.
This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include coma; fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat; seizures; severe or persistent dizziness, drowsiness, nausea, or vomiting.Proper storage of Lexapro solution:
Store Lexapro solution at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Lexapro solution out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about Lexapro solution, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Lexapro solution is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
- If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
- Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.
This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take Lexapro solution or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about Lexapro solution. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to Lexapro solution. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using Lexapro solution.
Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.