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Author Topic: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)  (Read 286 times)

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Offline LynnC

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Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« on: March 04, 2014, 03:29:32 PM »
I've been on brand lexapro for 4 months now (3 full months at 10mg). Although I've made improvements in my anxiety and depression, I get migraines (or very bad headaches) at least 15/30 days a month. I've kept track of this and it's been the same amount of days every month, give or take a few. I've never had migraines in my life before I started lexapro, so I'm pretty confident to say it's due to the medication. I do take tylonol or motrin but it only dulls the pain a little. Has anyone experienced this unwelcome side effect and what did you do? My pdoc suggested topomax but I'd hate to take another daily medication to offset the side effects of this medication. I'm not sure what to do or what to try next since every time I have a migraine my moods definitely start to slip again and I start feeling depressed all over again...there is a direct correlation between my headaches and my mood. Any comments would be much appreciated!
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Offline AncientMelody

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Re: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2014, 04:03:53 PM »
I'd suggest trying a different medication. Just because the lexapro is giving you migraines, doesn't mean another will.  Effexor actually can help alleviate headaches in some cases, so maybe talk to your doc about trying something like that.
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Offline LynnC

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Re: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2014, 04:23:47 PM »
Would it make sense that another drug in the ssri class do the same thing? Not sure if I should bite the bullet and try a daily migraine med or switch anti'ds. I'm back to feeling unstable again due to my headaches, ugh!
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Offline insights

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Re: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2014, 06:28:45 PM »
Would it make sense that another drug in the ssri class do the same thing? Not sure if I should bite the bullet and try a daily migraine med or switch anti'ds.

The headaches will probably stop if you switched to another SSRI and may even end if you switch to Celexa which contains the same active drug as Lexapro but may different side-effects.

Ian
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NOTE: I'm not a doctor, and particularly not yours, so there may be factors I'm unaware of. Therefore all advice is of a general nature and you should consult your doctor before following any of it, especially before changing med doses.

Offline LynnC

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Re: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2014, 09:01:05 PM »
I see my psychiatrist in the morning so I'll see what she has to say about Celexa. I'm scared of the switch in meds...slipping to severe depression again isn't a place I want to revisit anytime soon. If Celexa is so similar to lexapro, what would cause it to possibly not cause headaches too? Have anyone heard of people tolerating celexa and not lexapro or vise versa?
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Offline insights

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Re: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2014, 12:10:37 AM »
If Celexa is so similar to lexapro, what would cause it to possibly not cause headaches too?

Good question. One I have no answer for. Citalopram the chemical in Celexa is made up of two isomers, the active 'S' form escitalopram, and a much less active 'R' form. Lexapro contains only escitalopram. In theory there should act the same, but in practice some report subtle differences in effect, presumably because of the R isomer. I can't say that the headaches will definitely stop if you switch to Celexa, but given it is the easiest switch to make it might be worth a shot. Your psychiatrist may have samples that would allow you to try it at no cost.

Ian
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NOTE: I'm not a doctor, and particularly not yours, so there may be factors I'm unaware of. Therefore all advice is of a general nature and you should consult your doctor before following any of it, especially before changing med doses.

Offline monicav82

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Re: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2014, 03:50:21 AM »
I am so glad I found this thread. I have been having alot of weird feeling in my head and a same dull feeling as well. These problems didnt start until I start the escitroplam. I am whenning off and going to go back to citroplam generic for celexa. When I was on citroplam I had no issues with headaches or any side effects to be exact.
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Offline insights

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Re: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2014, 06:15:42 AM »
I am whenning off and going to go back to citroplam generic for celexa.

You don't have to wean off, but can to an overnight switch, taking double the Lexapro dose. However, you should discuss this with your doctor first.

Ian
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NOTE: I'm not a doctor, and particularly not yours, so there may be factors I'm unaware of. Therefore all advice is of a general nature and you should consult your doctor before following any of it, especially before changing med doses.

Offline LynnC

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Re: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2014, 09:09:10 AM »
I'll discuss the switch with my doctor today. I'm hoping it will be an easy switch but one never knows...it definitely scares me to slip into the pit of despair again! Do people normally experience a lot of withdrawals when switching meds?

Monica how long have you been on lexapro? Are your headaches pretty constant on this medication? How come you switched from Celexa?
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Offline insights

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Re: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2014, 03:40:05 PM »
Do people normally experience a lot of withdrawals when switching meds?

If you switch from one SSRI to another overnight you shouldn't experience any withdrawals, but there may be some side-effects for a day or two, though usually not if it's to citalopram.

Ian
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NOTE: I'm not a doctor, and particularly not yours, so there may be factors I'm unaware of. Therefore all advice is of a general nature and you should consult your doctor before following any of it, especially before changing med doses.

Offline LynnC

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Re: Migraines and lexapro (or any ssri)
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2014, 09:08:35 PM »
Well my psychiatrist didn't think celexa would make much of a difference when it comes to my headaches since it's so closely related to lexapro. She recommended Zoloft with a slow titration up on this and down on the lexapro over a month's time. Before I make the switch I'm going to try altering when I take my lex dose (morning to evening hours) and see if that helps...it's a low risk experiment, although I'm not sure it'll make a difference or not!
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