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Dr. Kaushik
Dr. Kaushik, Psychiatrist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 4661
Experience:  MD Psychiatry
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My husband (age 62) is on Lexapro and Ambien as well as high

Resolved Question:

My husband (age 62) is on Lexapro and Ambien as well as high blood pressure medicine, cholestrol medicine, and Lord knows what else. He has become more depressed and withdrawn and is missing on the average of one day a week of work. He says he aches all over and has no energy. Sometimes he will stay in bed 48 hours straight. With the side effects of recently prescibed Nuvigil, he got off it within a week. However, his doctor decreased the antidepressant by 50% and now without the "upper," he's really in a mess.

My concern is that he has an addiction to prescription drugs which could have been caused by the physician.

Please advise.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Kaushik replied 7 years ago.

Hi there ,

Welcome to Just answer !

Well, i would suggest a few changes so that your husband not only overcomes his depression , but also feels less sleepy and is able to carry out his job with as much energy as before ..

You see ambien is a sleep aiding drug which is the reason why your husband is feeling so sleepy , so it needs to be stopped so that he can function normally in his job ...

Secondly, lexapro needs to be replaced by another anti depressant such as wellbutrin XL , as it seems lexapro , which is an ssri anti depressant is not being able to his depressive symptoms ..

So,to summarize two changes need to be done -- one is to stop ambien and second is to replace lexapro with wellbutrin XL..

I hope this helps..

I wish you all the best..

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Customer: replied 7 years ago.

What is the difference between SSRI anti depressants and Wellbutrin XL? He tried Wellbutrin a couple of years ago and could not take it. Because he has been on anti depressants for over 20 years, he has been on several "families." Is he running out of options?

Thank you for your help.


Expert:  Dr. Kaushik replied 7 years ago.

The difference between the ssri anti depressants like lexapro and wellbutrin xl is that they belong to different classs of anti depressant drugs , which is based on their different mechanism of action to relieve depression.. Wellbutrin xl is bupropion and is an atypical anti depressant drug which is different from ssri anti depressant becuase of their different ways of dealing with depression by acting in the body differently.

Secondly since your husband has long standing depression and has had different anti depressants till now , so possibly he is left with fewer options , but , still i can suggest some other anti depresssants which he may not have used at all or may have used them long time back , which in itself gives him a chance of using the same drug again after a considerable long gap....

Some other antI depressants ,from which his doctor can choose one for him to replace lexapro are--



effexor xr

paxil cr





So, you shall discuss these above drugs with his doctor and let the doctor choose one drug from this lot , considering the fact which one has not been used at all or which one has been used long time back and was quite effective.


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