written by: Nishaat
• edited by: Diana Cooper
• updated: 12/30/2010
Allergic reactions to citalopram can be traumatic. Educate yourself on everything from the signs and symptoms to the alternatives to this drug available. Be prepared in case a citalopram allergic reaction strikes.
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Citalopram is an anti-depressant drug, falling under the SSRI (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) category. The drug impacts serotonin, a naturally occurring chemical in the brain, and helps to balance mood swings and control depression. Intake of citalopram should never be undertaken without the guidance of a doctor. Excess intake of the anti-depressant can lead to severe negative health effects, such as allergies.
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Citalopram Allergic Reactions
Skin rashes, hives, swelling in the face, breathing difficulties and swelling of the throat and tongue are some of the symptoms of a citalopram allergic reaction. Skin rashes and pruritus are the often reported dermatologic reactions whereas other skin conditions like acne, urticaria, skin discoloration, alopecia, dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis, dry skin, decreased sweating, pruritus ani, hypertrichosis, melanosis, cellulitis, keratitis, ecchymosis, escitalopram-induced cutaneous leukocytoclastic vasculitis, and cutaneous leukocytoclastic vasculitis are rarely reported. Even if the lesions occur, the signs and symptoms are normally cured within one week of discontinuation of the medicine.
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Past Medical Records
A citalopram allergic reaction has risk factors that include sensitive skin and unsuitability towards the citalopram drug elements. Whatever the reason might be, there are certain health conditions in which the anti-depressant should not be consumed or consumed only after the healthcare provider agrees to it after reviewing your medical history. These health conditions are bipolar depression or manic depression, medical history of suicidal thoughts or attempts, epilepsy, unstable heart, liver diseases, kidney problems, allergies of any kind, pregnancy and breastfeeding.
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Other Citalopram Side Effects
Psychological Changes – Aggression, hostility, agitation and irritability with the slightest provocation, Panic attacks, anxiety attacks, sudden behavioral changes, hyperactivity and restlessness
Physical Changes – High fever, sweating and uneven heartbeats, overactive reflex reaction, muscle rigidity, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, nausea, loss of coordination, headaches, problems with concentration, shallow breathing, fainting and hallucinating, weight changes, dry or watery mouth, mild nausea, decrease in sex drive, impotency, drowsiness and insomnia.
If any of the symptoms persists, medical help should be immediately called for.
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Alternatives to Citalopram
When you give your doctor your complete medical history of past ailments, you also need to tell him whether you are taking any other medicines on a daily basis, such as aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, etodolac, nabumetone, piroxicam, ndomethacin, carbamazepine, cimetidine, lithium, warfarin, almotriptan, zolmitriptan, frovatriptan, naratriptan, and any other anti-depressant medications. Also notify the doctor about other over-the-counter medications and prescription medicines you take regularly, including herbal products, vitamin supplements and mineral supplements.
Citalopram dosage should be exactly as the doctor recommends. Try not to miss the doses and if you do, take the missed one as soon as you remember. Sometimes patients feel inclined to have extra dose of citalopram but it is extremely harmful. Immediate medical attention should be sought in the case of an overdose. Sweating, nausea, confusion, seizure, dizziness, rapid heartbeat and coma are some symptoms of citalopram overdose.