Also Known As: Escitalopram, Lexapro
Escitalopram (also known under various trade names) is an antidepressant of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) class. It is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of adults and children over 12 years of age with major depressive disorder and generalized anxiety disorder. Escitalopram is the (S)-stereoisomer (enantiomer) of the earlier Lundbeck drugcitalopram, hence the name escitalopram. Escitalopram is noted for its high selectivity with serotonin reuptake inhibition. The similarity between escitalopram and citalopram has led to accusations of "evergreening", an accusation that Lundbeck has rejected.
Escitalopram is sometimes prescribed off-label for the treatment of other conditions: social anxiety disorder, panic disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder. There is some evidence favouring escitalopram over the antidepressants citalopram and fluoxetine in the first two weeks of major depression. Concerns of sponsorship bias with the studies are however noted. In another review escitalopram and sertraline had the highest rate of efficacy and acceptability among adults receiving treatment for major depression with second-generation antidepressants.