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re: Lexapro sexual side effects

Posted by guyndenver on August 2, 2003, at 12:47:19

In reply to re: Lexapro sexual side effects guyndenver, posted by lil' jimi on August 2, 2003, at 5:35:15

Thanks, Jim. I appreciate your input on this.

Even though I have been treated for "depression" numerous times over the years, this last bout was with anxiety. I had an attack so severe that I could no longer eat. Everything I tried to swallow got stuck in my throat. After numerous procedures to try to "fix" the problem, my doc suggested that it might be anxiety and put me on Remeron Soltabs. Didn't work, so we tried liquid Prozac with limited results. Well, to make a long story short, I went for over 5 months living on mashed potatoes, yogurt, milkshakes, etc. I lost 30 lbs (not that I couldn't stand to loose 30 lbs, but not the way to do it). After I started eating again and stopped the Prozac, they put me on Paxil CR, 12.5mg to just keep me on an even keel. I had been on regular Paxil in the past and hated it. Paxil CR seemed to be better in all aspects except the sexual effects.

I was in to see my doc two weeks ago and we discussed this all. She said it was up to me what I wanted to do. She told that since I have such an issue with insomnia as well, that she would really like to up my Paxil CR to 25mg and I told her I didn't want to do that because of the sexual side effects. That's when she mentioned Lexapro, or she said I could go off the Paxil for a while and see where I am. So, that was what I opted for. I have been totally off Paxil now for nearly a week (a week Monday) and ALL sexual side effects are gone. What a joy! I am still dealing with the dizzy spells, nausea and all that other crap that happens during withdrawls, but at least now I can have normal sex.

I think I will see how this goes. If there is any sign of my anxiety issues resurfacing, I will have to do something - maybe Lexapro. We will see. I would like to hear more about your experience on Lex, but will respect the others on the site.

> hi guyndenver,
> and my thanks for covering for us there, theump .. ... .. sorry i'm so late ...
> guy, i certainly understand your feelings ... frustration can have few sharper definitions ... past posters have shared the misery of the folly of viagra for anorgasmia, the inability to have orgasms ... ... to have endured this as long as you have is infuriating and hardly seems a relief for depression ... all of which you have stated very well.
> there have been a number of posts about sexual side effects (hardly "side" effects) on this lexapro thread ... many have been prompted by inquiries by me ... .. ... there would seem to me to be a concensus that lex has less sexual SEs than paxil or effexor ... which i would say is damning lex with faint praise due to paxil's and effexor's notorious reputations for sexual dysfunction of many types, notably decreased libido ... the posts to this thread have mentioned almost no lexapro related loss of libido (of those that have mentioned this, almost all were using other meds as well) and there have been no mentions of erectile dysfuntion.
> and all of this information is from my distillation of reading the entire lex thread which extends back more than a year ... not exactly science, especially with my memory for a data base! ... ...
> ... ... nevertheless, there are consistencies which would suggest some validity to these observations ...
> my wife was on paxil maybe 15 years ago now and we have regreted it everyday since ... we still struggle to recover her libido, but the greater tragedy was not knowing or ever being told about paxil side effects until very recently ...
> i have been on lexapro since march ... ... i had some intense SEs the first few days, but by 2 weeks they all went away ... ...
> ... ... one of my side effects was anorgasmia ... ... frankly it was frightening, but _within_ that first week i went from a total inabilty to have an orgasm or ejaculate, despite full libido and erectile function ... ... back to orgasmic functon.
> ... ... in total, this lasted less than a week ... ...
> actually, i have had to restrain myself posting about sexual function here because i am among a (small?) number of lex users who have had beneficial sexual experience since taking lex ... ... on a message board about meds for anxiety and depression, it isn't really considerate to be celebrating sexual benefits from the drugs you're taking too loudly ... ...
> ... ... since my anorgasmia went away my oragasms have changed for the better, but i am only giving details if requested, out of respect for the folks suffering who don't need to hear this.
> ... ... so guyndenver, that's my story ... ... after all the studies are done and all the posts posted, there will remain a wide range of possibilities of how lexapro could effect your anorgasmia .... and all of the probabilites won't mean a thing compared to your own, unique, risky experience of trying lexapro for yourself ...
> ... ... stories i tell don't matter compared to direct experience
> i have not taken any other ADs ... but i believe the SSRIs are different from each other, even celexa from lexapro by a great deal, i would say, and that each ssri effects the user differently, but individual variation of the users overwhelms any value from the statistics from studies ... stats can kind of guide you before you take, say, an ssri, but you're on your own after you do take an ssri ...
> ... ... except we have this forum here (Thanks, Dr. Bob!) to share our experiences, offer information, and to support each other ... ... i am indebted to the people who have posted here ... i have benefitted greatly. ... my thanks to every one.
> i wish you the best and i would hope you would keep posting here whether you take any meds or not ... ... it would be great to hear how you are doing ...
> ...and as my pal Wayne has taught me, we sign out with, his classic ...
> ~ jim
> p.s. your paxil SEs have endured so long since you quit paxil, i'd wonder if lexapro Could overcome such an established condition ... what does your doc say about your persistent anorgamia?
> ~ j
> > Thanks for your input. But, I think I will wait until Lex has been out for a bit longer. I read an interesting article I found on webmd about SSRI's and sexual side effects in general. It states that overall, in men, SSRI's create some sort of sexual side effect, whether it be E.D. or "delayed orgasm" in around 10% of those taking them. But, they are now finding that that 10% number isn't even close to the actual number of those effected. They blame the false findings in the clinical trials and post trials to the fact that most men are uncomfortable discussing these problems with their docs. This is not a direct quote, but the jist of the article. So, if on average, SSRI's in general show 10%, and Lexapro (according to their own documentation) shows 9%, I aint gonna hold my breath.
> >
> > My doc tried the viagra route with me and thus the other issue. I can now go for 4 hours straight and no orgasm. Might sound great to some, but, trust me, it is pure hell! If any company out there actually ever is successfull in figuring this one out, I hope I know someone on the inside because I will mortgage my home to buy their stock! It will out sell all other SSRI's out there.
> >
> > > Well, I'm a woman so I can't say for men but I have read on this message board that sexual side effects do dissipate on Lex. As for myself I would say it lasted a little over a week, almost would get there but couldn't, I think other posters here called it anorgasmic. Now things are fine if not better. I think Jim or Wayne have had good postings about this.
> > >
> > > If you type "sexual side effects" into the search for this site you should come up with past posts dealing with that subject.
> > >
> > > I hope this helps and hopefully someone else will speak up from the male point of view.
> > >
> > >
> > > > Really? And, you have direct experience with this? Because a whole year after Paxil CR and it's still there - the same with any anti-d I have ever been on. I have never taken any anti-d that the sexual side effects ever went away. I have not ever taken Lexapro, and based upon the info on their website, the sexual side effects don't go away in 9% of all men. And, they admit that this number is probably artifically low due to men's lack of willingness to discuss sexual issues with their docs. Can anyone else confirm this assurtion?
> > > >
> > > > > The sexual side effects go away after a week or so. How long have you been taking the Lex?
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > > > I just don't get it. Can't anyone out there make an anti-d that doesn't mess with your sexlife? I have tried them all! I am currently on Paxil CR, 12.5mg, for treatment of anxiety. It helps, but it's not worth it any more! I finally got over most of the side effects (been on it for nearly a year) but there is one nagging side effect that I will not tolerate any more and that is the problem with the so-called "delayed ejaculation". I can have sex for hours and never ejaculate without a lot of "manual intervention" and at that, it is very unsatisfying. I was so excited when my doc told me about lexapro and about the reduced side effects. I decided to research it before I switched and I am glad I did. Sounds to me like there is absolutely no difference between lexapro, paxil, celexa - you name them. It is really sad that they have drugs that make you feel good about yourself, make you want to live your life to it's fullest, but takes so much away in the area of one of lifes most basic of activities. Sheesh! Can't somebody do something? I think I will be stopping all anti-d's and dealing with the anxiety on my own - at least then I will not have the added performance anxiety during sex!
> > > > > >




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