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antidepressants-sex loss

Apr 27, 2008

Hi Dr. Horwath, Dr. I have been taking 300 mg of effexor xr for 3 yrs now 4 chronic depression. I rarely have sex due to loss of erections-I have stopped effexor and they return-My question is do all people who take anti-deppressants just stop having sex? If I continue on effexor long term I assume I will become impitant for good. Is this true? Thank you

Response from Dr. Horwath

The side effect you have, erectile dysfunction, is related to the pharmacologic effect of Effexor. However, this effect only occurs while taking the drug. It is not permanent.

This is not a side effect of all (or even most) antidepressants). For example, a class of drugs know as SSRIs do not usually cause erectile dysfunction. This class includes drugs such as fluoxetine (Prozac), sertraline (Zoloft), paroxetine (Paxil), citalopram (Celexa) and escitalopram (Lexapro). Although a common side effect with these antidepressants is decreased libido (less interest in sex), erectile dysfunction is not common.

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