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can citalopram stop being as effective over say 2 yrs?

(13 Posts)
piratecat Wed 14-Nov-12 17:00:20

Hiya, am posting on behalf of a close relative. She started the tabs for depression and anxiety, well it must be a few yrs ago. Over the last year has been feeling steadily worse, to the point now where her anxiety is ruling her life.
Ok it's my mum. She lives in another country, and i have heard and seen the decline. I spent time with her in the summer and tbh she was a mare. Very quick to belittle and no enregy or enthusiasm. She will be coming for a visit in a couple weeks, and i have been trying to get her to go to the gp.
I am on antidepressants myself, it's a family thing. Mine is prozac, and it's been marvelous. Long term too. Do youthink she needs to up her dose, or tyr something else.

Do they lose effectiveness over time? Mine hasn't which i am grateful for.
So worried about her but she's a s stubborn as a bloody mule, and can't see what she's being like sad

pennefab Wed 14-Nov-12 17:50:34

I've recently had that experience. Found I needed to change dosage and add another med. have seen improvement with increased dosage. My Psych said that if didn't seen improvement we would switch meds altogether.

My advice is to encourage her to go to gp/psych and re-evaluate treatment options.

LeeCoakley Wed 14-Nov-12 18:04:08

She definitely needs to go back to her gp and he will either up the citalopram or find another to suit her needs. Presumably she has to go for reviews - doesn't she say then that the meds aren't working?

Regarding the effectiveness - I have taken Citalopram for 13 years and it still works for me. I am on a very low therapeutical dose now but without it I wouldn't have any quality of life. Hope she gets it sorted.

Doobydoo Wed 14-Nov-12 18:07:01

I think LEECOAKLEY'S advice is good.I have been on it for nearly 2 tears.I reduced the dose...and feel it still does the job.Perhaps your mum needs something else or for the dose to be upped.She definitely needs a review.

piratecat Wed 14-Nov-12 18:08:59

hiya, she has had alot of strain this yr, a bereavement etc...

I don't see her much and hadn't realised how bad she had got. Last time she was home was april and she's got worse since then.

I will deffo tell her to visit gp. Thanks so much for your replies, and i wish you both ongoing 'okayness' if that's a term! xx

piratecat Wed 14-Nov-12 18:09:36

i'm the same, prozac has kept me alive for 6 yrs now.x

Charleebird Wed 14-Nov-12 18:44:05

Hiya i was on fluoxetine for 3 years but 8 weeks ago i begun feeling weird and suffered major panic attacks. Doc told me the meds werent working for me anymore. Im on sertreline now and still feel as crap sad

Its all about trial and error x

Smudge588 Thu 15-Nov-12 19:39:00

Hi. I think it's more to do with the stress and strain at the time. What might have been fine for the last 2 years might now need increasing to help with increased stress. I have had a similar experience this year after bereavement. Recommend seeing the GP for advice.

aPirateInaPearTree Thu 15-Nov-12 20:56:06

oh charleebird i hope things improve. how much time are you meant to give b4 returning yourself.

yes the change from the bereavement has most def had an effect. i hope smudge that you are coping?

ArkadyRose Sun 18-Nov-12 19:58:16

Citalopram has an effective life of about 18-24 months; beyond that and its effectiveness tapers off. She should see her GP/psychiatrist about being switched to something else such as escitalopram, which is similar enough (being derived from the formula for citalopram) to citalopram that she should be able to switch over without getting withdrawal, but is different enough that it should start to take effect within 4-6 weeks of starting it. As with starting any new SSRI she should start on a low dose and taper up until it is effective.

aPirateInaPearTree Sun 18-Nov-12 21:33:26

thankyou for this info arkadyrose, that's interesting. how do you know about the time scale thingy?

ArkadyRose Sun 18-Nov-12 21:51:04

I keep myself very well read and up to date on all the research papers (helps that OH works for the British Medical Journal!); the effective life of several SSRIs was researched about 8 years back with follow-ups about 5 years ago. Citalopram is one of the shorter ones; it's generally prescribed for short- to medium-term use and isn't really suitable for long-term treatment (fluoxetine has a better profile and effective life for that). It's popular though as it has fewer side effects than fluoxetine or paroxetine & is very well tolerated by most people.

I have a couple of friends who cycle between citalopram and escitalopram every couple of years, which works well for them.

aPirateInaPearTree Mon 19-Nov-12 11:49:24

thankyou. really helpful. x

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