Available for prescription since 2002,1 Lexapro® is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug administration to treat anxiety disorders and depression. As with other selective serotonin reuptake indicator medications (commonly known as SSRIs), however, patients should be aware of potential withdrawal symptoms from Lexapro.
Lexapro withdrawal problems
When a Lexapro patient begins to suffer from side effects, his doctor may suggest a reduction in the dosage or even discontinuation of the medication; however, some patients experience symptoms of withdrawal from Lexapro.2 The American Family Physician journal3 reported that up to 20 percent of people who stop taking drugs like Lexapro experience withdrawal symptoms. These may include4:
- Mood changes
- Loss of energy
- Gastrointestinal problems
- Nausea and vomiting
- Changes in Appetite
- Brain shocks
- Sleep problems
- Balance and motor skill problems
- Sensory, including visual, disturbances (confusion, ringing in ears, dizziness)
Lexapro withdrawal symptoms may occur immediately or over the course of weeks. A patient discontinuing the antidepressant can experience symptoms that manifest while driving or during other activities, or that mask more serious conditions.
Opiate withdrawal and antidepressants
According to the National Institutes of Health, physicians should evaluate opiate withdrawal patients for signs of depression, however, they should not withhold antidepressant medications under the assumption that the depression is only a side effect of the withdrawal, as it may be related to a pre-existing condition.5 (Opiates include heroin, codeine, oxycontin, morphine, dilaudid, and methadone.)
If you or someone you know has suffered from withdrawal symptoms or complications because of Lexapro, you may have the right to legal compensation. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney to learn more about your rights and to discuss your next steps.