Escitalopram induced severe PSSD

Welcome to our community. Please fill in the following template as a way of introducing yourself, and helping others to understand your background and situation.

I’m a female btw.

Where are you from (country)?

How did you find this forum (Google search – if so, what search terms? Via link from a forum or website – if so, what page? Other?)
-Via the PSSD forum

What is your current age, height, weight?

What specific drug did you use (finasteride, dutasteride, saw palmetto, isotretinoin/Accutane, fluoxetine, sertraline, citalopram, leuprorelin, etc…)?

What dose did you take (eg. 1 mg/day, 1 mg every other day etc.)?

What condition was being treated with the drug?

For how long did you take the drug (weeks/months/years)?
-6 days

How old were you, and WHEN (date) did you start the drug?
How old were you when you quit, and WHEN (date) did you quit?
How did you quit (cold turkey or taper off)?
-cold turkey

How long into your usage did you notice the onset of side effects?
-I noticed from the first day

What side effects did you experience that have yet to resolve since discontinuation?

Check the boxes that apply. You can save your post first, then interactively check/uncheck the boxes by clicking on them. If your symptoms change, please update your list.

[x ] Loss of Libido / Sex Drive
Erectile Dysfunction
[ x] Complete Impotence
Loss of Morning Erections
Loss of Spontaneous Erections
Loss of Nocturnal Erections
Watery Ejaculate
Reduced Ejaculate
Inability or Difficulty to Ejaculate / Orgasm
Reduced Sperm Count / Motility

[x ] Emotional Blunting / Emotionally Flat
[x ] Difficulty Focusing / Concentrating
[ x] Memory Loss / Forgetfulness
[x ] Stumbling over Words / Losing Train of Thought
Slurring of Speech
[ x] Lack of Motivation / Feeling Passive / Complacency
Extreme Anxiety / Panic Attacks
Severe Depression / Melancholy
[ x] Suicidal Thoughts

Penile Tissue Changes (narrowing, shrinkage, wrinkled)
Penis curvature / rotation on axis
Testicular Pain
Testicular Shrinkage / Loss of Fullness
[ x] Genital numbness / sensitivity decrease
Weight Gain
Gynecomastia (male breasts)
Muscle Wastage
[x ] Muscle Weakness
Joint Pain
[ x] Dry / Dark Circles under eyes

Prostate pain
Persistent Fatigue / Exhaustion
[ x] Stomach Pains / Digestion Problems
[x ] Constipation / “Poo Pellets”
Vision - Acuity Decrease / Blurriness
[x ] Tinnitus (ringing or high pitched sound in ears)
Hearing loss
[ x] Increased hair loss
[ x] Frequent urination
Lowered body temperature

[x ] Other (please explain)

I have insomnia, loss of hunger, loss of taste and smell, loss of sensitivity on skin (can’t feel touch or pain properly), brain fog, no reaction to coffee/alcohol, no sweating, no adrenaline, I never feel tired. Literally all normal bodily functions and emotions are gone.

What (if any) treatments have you undertaken to recover from your side effects since discontinuation of the drug?

  • I’m taking olanzapine so I can sleep

If you have pre or post-drug blood tests, what hormonal changes have you encountered since discontinuing the drug (please post your test results in the “Blood Tests” section and link to them in your post)?

Anything not listed in the above questions you’d like to share about your experience?

-I’m absolutely devastated that this happened and frankly I have suicidal thoughts about this which I never before had.

Tell us your story, in your own words, about your usage and side effects experienced while on/off the drug.

  • I noticed the genital numbness and the lack of my depression being gone from the first day. Soon I realised that the depression was gone because I felt no emotions at all and therefore could not be sad. Some of the other side effects came gradually, like the insomnia and loss of sensation in the whole body.

How long have you been off of the drug

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Hi @Gavia, welcome to the forum! I’m sorry this is happening to you! I can definitely relate to the “not feeling thirst, hunger, or being tired”-part, and I’m sure others do too.

I hope you’ll update this thread and tell us how how the symptoms are developing and how you’re coping.

If you’ve only been off the drug for a few weeks or days, give it some more time before despairing - it seems like a lot of people recover from these things within the first few months.


Hey Gavia! I noticed you’re on an anti-psychotic which is something that can also induce the symptoms you’re experiencing. How long were you off the Escitalopram before you went on the anti-psychotic for sleep?

It’s something to keep in mind is all.



1,5 months approximately.


I was off it for a month, I had all the side effects before taking it so at least it has not added to those. I don’t really know how I should go about taking the olanzapine, because without it I only slept for minutes.

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Hi Gavia, I have had PSSD from Citalopram for about 7 years, unfortunately Citalopram and escitalopram seem like two nasty drugs. However many people seem to recover in the first years, I have had some improvement on some symptoms, and now I have restart weight training. Generally many people in the first and second year improve a lot. Try to keep yourself away from stress, get light exercise, control your diet, try to eat healthily. Don’t mess with any crazy supplements early on, try to give your body time to recover naturally.


it seems to me like these symptoms are a direct result of the HPA axis hyperactivity. most of your symptoms are related to the hypothalamus. when the HPA has a dysfunction you are left with all of these symptoms. i can’t be certain but i believe the HPA axis is the root of most problems on this forum.

hypothalamus functions:

  • Heart rate and blood pressure
  • Body temperature
  • Fluid and electrolyte balance, including thirst
  • Appetite and body weight
  • Glandular secretions of the stomach and intestines
  • Production of substances that influence the pituitary gland to release hormones
  • Sleep cycles


Just an update to my situation.

No positive changes to my symptoms, things have only gotten worse.

I have lost collagen and muscles all around my body and I have wrinkly skin. I don’t look like myself anymore and have lost my previously athletic appearance.

I don’t know that many people with PSSD who have these symptoms, it seems they are more common with PFS.

I might post some before/after photos if I’ll find the courage.

P.S. I don’t take the olanzapine anymore, haven’t for a couple of months. I can sleep without it now.


Sucks to hear… Thank you for coming back and sharing, even if it’s bad news. It helps everyone to get an understanding of what we’re up against.


Thank you for update
So sorry about what’s happened
Hope you start feeling better soon
Please don’t give up


Just updating;

I’m so fed up with this condition. It’s like I live the same groundhog day over and over again ever since this started. No matter what I try to do my brain just doesn’t respond. Everything is like watching paint dry. Add the physical symptoms on top of that, the muscle pain, the wastage and it’s true horror.

I was supposed to go celebrate my 30th birthday in Florida at Galaxy’s Edge, now I can’t go. Also lost my relationship due to this. Everyday I’m plagued by memories of my past life.

I don’t know how much longer I can hold on.


Dude Galaxy’s Edge would be awesome, why can’t you go? It’s going to be your birthday you should celebrate!

Unfortunately I couldn’t enjoy it in this state. I tried watching the new Kenobi series too but I just feel lobotomised. Don’t want to be a downer but this is just the reality of my anhedonic life.

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Do people actually celebrate in this condition?

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I’m sorry to hear you’re going through this. Forgive me for underestimating the severity of the emotional anhedonia that some have. While I am not a very expressive/emotional person I don’t think I suffer from this symptom as others do. So I can’t fully understand what you go through.

I hope you can still find things that are intellectually or in some other form engaging. And of course I wish you a nice birthday nonetheless.

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I am so sorry to hear this. My first birthday with PFS was really hard. I spent it with the girl I was seeing at the time and I was having an especially bad day with anhedonia. I couldn’t cope with the fact that a day that has always been full of joy for me was so entirely devoid of happiness.

It is very hard to deal with, but with time, most people’s symptoms improve to some degree and you get better at coping too. I just turned 23 today and had a laid back, fun day. It wasn’t as fun as my birthdays used to be, but it was certainly miles better than my 19th, which was my first birthday with PFS. You just have to hold on, hope for improvement and temper your expectations.

Happy early/belated birthday, I hope you are blessed with a good day whenever it is.




Same mate it’s true horror I hope things get better for you with time


I’m so sorry… I can definitely relate. It’s truly horrible