Need help with citalopram dose

Posted , 4 users are following.

I started on citalopram about 8 weeks ago mainly for anxiety and mild depression. My Dr really didn't seem to know what she was doing and had no experience of the drug so read online and then put me straight on 20mg. Prior to this I wasn't on anything.

I had the most horrendous side effects. Nausea and extreme lethargy and tiredness being the worst. I had to take some afternoons off work just so I could sleep. After reading online myself I started taking just half a tablet (so 10mg) and eventually the side effects started to.lift a little and I started feeling better. After 4 weeks I tried increasing the dose but the lethargy was awful. Worst than the depression. So I dropped back to 10mg. I really liked how calm I felt on it but still had a sedating effect after 6 weeks. Didn't really notice any mood lifting properties.

Fast forward to my review at 6 weeks and the Dr said that 10mg was too low (she was again reading to me from a book) and if I didn't want to increase to 20mg I should try a different medication. So put me on Fluoxetine 20mg. My anxiety and irritability on this drug is off the charts. 2 weeks in and I miss the calming effect Citalopram was having.

So my question is this. Is the Dr right that 10mg of citalopram was too low. If I was feeling better on it would that have tapered off as I was on such a low dose? Should I have stuck with 20mg? Really not sure but so far preferred citalopram to fluoxetine.

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  • Posted


    I'm glad you are taking control of this. 10 mg is a low dose. See if you dr can prescribe the citalopram in 10mgs. So you can cut then in half and start doing 15mg then after a week or two go to 20. I hope this helps.

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  • Posted

    Hi cinammon

    Please don't take this the wrong way as I'm not a doctor but you are chopping and chnging an awful lot. These meds take months to stabilise in your system. Each dose increase has side effects and time to see if it works not even weeks but months.

    I was on 10mg for three months then upped to 15mg now I'm on 20mg and I am really tired but only been on the 20mg for three weeks. They say you need to give each dose at least 6 weeks to see the effect it has. Maybe start again on 10mg of citalopram for a while then adjust accordingly?

    I'm not a doctor at all this is just from the advice I've been given.

    Good luck

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  • Posted

    Yes Akins is right

    Your chopping around too much

    What a pity ur Gp is not up on this

    A lot aren't I can confirm that!

    I am medical but also have the personal experience

    20 mgs is the initial therapeutic starting dose and I think you should have stuck at that for Cple months

    Yes the initial side effects are a tough ride but ur body needs to settle with that

    Far too early to have changed meds

    When u start these meds it's tough and when you come off or change dose you get same things happening again

    It's the nature of the beast and how it works

    When I came off it 3 yrs ago from20 mg I took a year reducing in 2.5 mg amounts. I had no withdrawal.

    It's powerful stuff

    So be aware

    However am back on it since jan. Have a look at my starter feed Success on Citalopram

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