Escitalopram is the generic name for the drug known by the brand name Lexapro that belongs to a class of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). It is used to treat depression and generalized anxiety disorder and works in the body by affecting the balance of certain substances that influence mood. It is available as an oral medication in tablet and liquid forms. Before taking escitalopram, an individual should discuss his or her complete medical history with the doctor to avoid potential complications. Common side effects include nausea, fatigue and sexual difficulties.
Depression, also known as major depressive disorder (MDD) and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), is a serious illness that affects lives profoundly and requires treatment by a medical professional. One of the drugs used to treat these disorders is an SSRI called escitalopram, otherwise known as Lexapro. This medication works by influencing levels of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that affects mood, in the body. The medicine blocks serotonin from being reabsorbed so more of it is available for use in the brain, which has a positive effect on the patient's mood. Many mood disorders are thought to be caused by imbalances of serotonin and other neurotransmitters which aid communication between nerve cells and influence many facets of mood and behavior.
The drug is available as a tablet or an oral solution and is taken daily. It needs time to start working, and maximum benefit can take as long as four weeks to be observable. It shouldn't be taken at the same time as other antidepressants known as monoamine oxidase inhibitors because dangerous interactions can occur. While taking this medicine, other drugs that should be avoided include aspirin, NSAID pain relievers, any medication or supplement that affects serotonin levels, and blood thinners. Patients should inform their doctor of any past or present medical conditions as well as any medications or supplement use, to reduce the chances of serious complications.
Escitalopram causes a range of side effects including indigestion, nausea, dry mouth, unusual sweating, diarrhea, constipation, headache, insomnia, blurred vision, fatigue and drowsiness. Sexual side effects like delayed ejaculation and decreased libido also occur in many adult patients. Use of escitalopram is not approved for children under twelve years old. Children often experience added side effects that include congested nasal passages, vomiting, back pain, and urinary tract infection. It has also been linked to an increased chance of suicidal thinking and related conditions in children, teenagers, and young adults under age 24. As a result, the behavior of patients in this age range should be monitored closely.