What is Cipralex?
Cipralex is a prescriptional medication that is mainly used to treat depression and generalized anxiety disorder (a condition in which a person experiences excessive worries and tension, which disrupts daily life; such a state lasts for more than six months).
What are the uses of Cipralex?
Cipralex belongs to the category of antidepressant drugs.
In depression, there are disturbances in the brain's serotonin-system, which is considered an important factor in developing depression and related disorders. It is believed that serotonin helps in maintaining mental balance. Cipralex acts on this serotonin-system and increases serotonin levels of the brain, thus helping treat the same. Cipralex can be prescribed in the following conditions:
- Depression (major depressive disorders)
- Anxiety disorders (panic disorders with or without agoraphobia, social anxiety, generalized anxiety, and obsessive-compulsive disorder)
The medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your physician or pharmacist for detailed information.
How do you use Cipralex?
- Take this medicine orally, once daily with food or as prescribed by your physician.
- Take this tablet daily at the same time.
- Follow all the instructions on the prescription label.
- Do not stop taking this medication abruptly without consulting your doctor.
- Do not take it more or less, or take it more than often than prescribed by your doctor.
- Do not stop using it even if you feel well.
Your doctor may start you with a low dose of Cipralex and increase your dose after one week; Cipralex may take a few weeks or longer before you begin to notice the full benefits of the medication.
If You Miss the Dose
- If you happen to miss a dose of Cipralex, take the missed dose as soon as you remember.
- However, if it is almost time for the next dose, do not take the missed dose and continue with your next scheduled dose.
- Do not take a double dose to compensate for the missed dose.
What are the side-effects and risks of Cipralex?
Like all other medications, Cipralex may cause side effects, although it is unlikely to happen in everyone. However, it is important that you are aware of what could be the possible side effects.
Very Common side effects:
Common side effects:
- Weight gain
- Blocked or runny nose
- Decreased or increased appetite
- Sexual disturbances (delayed ejaculation, problems with erection, decreased sexual drive, and women may experience difficulties achieving orgasm)
- Anxiety, restlessness, abnormal dreams, difficulties falling asleep, feeling sleepy, dizziness, yawning, tremors, prickling of the skin
- Diarrhea, constipation, vomiting, dry mouth
- Pain in muscle and joints
- Increased sweating
Uncommon side effects:
- Swelling of the arms or legs
- Decreased weight
- Fast heartbeat
- Grinding one's teeth, agitation, nervousness, panic attack, confusion
- Disturbed sleep, taste disturbances
- Fainting (syncope)
- Enlarged pupils (mydriasis)
- Visual disturbance, ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
- Loss of hair
- Irregular menstrual period
- Excessive menstrual bleeding
Rare side effects:
- Slow heartbeat
- Swelling of skin, tongue, lips, pharynx or face,
- Difficulties breathing or swallowing (severe allergic reaction)
- High fever, agitation, confusion, trembling, and abrupt contractions of muscles. These may be signs of a rare condition called serotonin syndrome.
Additionally, there are a number of side effects known to occur with Cipralex they are;
- Loss of appetite
- Motor restlessness
This is not a complete list of side effects, and others may occur. Please consult your doctor to know more about other possible side effects.
Who should not take Cipralex?
Inform your physician if you have the following conditions before starting Cipralex:
- Abnormal heartbeat
- Cardiac disorders
- Liver disorders
- Kidney disorders
- Low sodium levels in the blood
- Electroconvulsive treatment
Cipralex should not be used for children and adolescents below 18 years of age.
Talk to your doctor before taking Cipralex if:
- You are taking any other medication, are pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning a pregnancy.
- You are allergic to Cipralex or any of its ingredients or have any other allergies.
- You are allergic to any other medication.
- You are taking any other drugs, over-the-counter medicines, herbal products, or nutritional supplements.
Besides, certain medicines may interfere with its working and thus might not be safe to take them together. Some of them are:
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors such as phenelzine, iproniazid, isocarboxazid, nialamide, tranylcypromine. Even if you have finished taking anyone of the MAOIs as mentioned above, you will need to wait 2 weeks before you start taking your Cipralex tablets.
- St John's Wort or Hypericum (Herbal medicine)
- Acetylsalicylic acid
- Erythromycin IV
This may not be a comprehensive list, and other drugs may interact with Cipralex. Please inform your doctor if you are taking any of the medicines listed above.
When should you not take Cipralex?
You should not take Cipralex if:
- It has passed the expiry date of the medicine printed on the pack.
- The packaging shows signs of tampering
Inform your doctor about the safe use of alcoholic beverages during your treatment with Cipralex.
You should not operate machinery or drive until you know how Cipralex affects you.