Citalopram is used to treat the following underlying conditions:

  • depression
  • bulimia nervosa
  • obsessive compulsive disorder
  • panic attacks
  • post traumatic disorder
  • anxiety disorder
  • manic depressive disorder
  • postpartum depression (off-label)

IUPAC name: 1-[3-(dimethylamino)propyl]-1-(4-fluorophenyl)-3H-2-benzofuran-5-carbonitrile

Drug class: selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) antidepressant

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Route of administration: Oral

Is it a drug that needs a prescription? YES

Is it an OTC drug? NO

Mechanism of action

This medication blocks the reuptake of serotonin by nerves, increasing the level of serotonin in the brain and aiding in the maintenance of mental stability.

Side effects

Nausea, dizziness, diarrhea, upset stomach, dry mouth, yawning, sweating, insomnia, unusual tiredness, drowsiness, fainting,  sexual dysfunction,  heartburn, headache, weight loss, seizures, bruising/bleeding easily, weakness, vomiting, rash/itching are some of the side effects associated with citalopram.


Before taking this medication, take the following precautions and notify your doctor:

-If you are allergic to it, any other medicine, or if you have other allergies

 -If you are taking other medications (including prescription medicine, nonprescription medicine, or herbal products),

-If you have a medical history of heart problems (decreased or abnormal heart rate),manic depressive disorder, suicidal thoughts, hepatic disease, low sodium level in blood,  seizures, kidney disease, diabetes, ulcers in stomach, dehydration, angle closure glucoma

-Avoid alcohol consumption as it makes you  more drowsy

This medication is normally avoided during pregnancy since it can harm the fetus.

Consult your doctor if you intend to use this medicine while breastfeeding.

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