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Taking citalopram. Weaning off Ativan. Which is a stronger medication? Is the anxiety the withdrawal symptom?

I am weaning off ativan slowly and taking 20 mg of citalopram which I increased from 10mg approx. 4 wks ago. Just courious if the anxiety I am experiencing is because the ativan withdrawl is stronger than the citalopram? I am taking 1.25mg but not accurately because I don t get the exact amount from a non-scored .5mg. I do have .05 from Watson Lab, but they are breaking apart so I am going back to the Pharm tomorrow to replace them.
Asked On : Thu, 20 Dec 2012
Answers:  2 Views:  123
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Psychiatrist 's  Response

Welcome to HealthcareMagic Public Forum

In drug treatment of anxiety two types of medicine used. For immediate relief of anxiety benzodiazepines group (like ativan) of medicines are used and for long term relief most commonly SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) (like citalopram) are used. SSRI takes around 3-4 weeks to show its effect.

Ativan is not used for long term due to risk of addiction. Addiction do not occur with citalopram.

I hope this information has been both informative and helpful for you.
Wish you Good Health.

Dr. Ashish Mittal
Answered: Fri, 21 Dec 2012
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Psychiatrist Dr. Sundar Gnanavel's  Response
Thanks for your query. Anxiety disorders can be managed with benzodiazepines/ sedatives like ativan (lorazepam) for an initial acute basis for immediate relief. However, considering the abuse potential of the drug we prefer a long-lasting solution to the problem in the form of SSRI drugs like citalopram which initially increase anxiety but reduce the symptoms over the long run. Drugs like citalopram are not addictive and are not related to the sedative group. Hope you found the information useful.
Dr Sundar Gnanavel
Answered: Mon, 31 Dec 2012
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