contains the active ingredient escitalopram oxalate
CONSUMER MEDICINE INFORMATION
What is in this leaflet
This leaflet answers some common questions about Loxalate.
It does not contain all the available information. It does not take the place of
talking to your doctor or pharmacist.
All medicines have benefits and risks. Your doctor has weighed the risks of you taking
Loxalate against the benefits expected for you.
If you have any concerns about taking this medicine, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
Keep this leaflet with your medicine.
You may need to read it again.
What Loxalate is used for
Loxalate is used to treat depression.
Loxalate belongs to a group of medicines called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors
(SSRIs). Depression is longer lasting and/or more severe than the "low moods" everyone
has from time to time due to the stress of everyday life. It is thought to be caused
by a chemical imbalance in parts of the brain. This imbalance affects your whole body
and can cause emotional and physical symptoms such as feeling low in spirit, loss
of interest in activities, being unable to enjoy life, poor appetite or overeating,
disturbed sleep, often waking up early, loss of sex drive, lack of energy and feeling
guilty over nothing.
Loxalate corrects this chemical imbalance and may help relieve the symptoms of depression.
Ask your doctor if you have any questions about why Loxalate has been prescribed for
Your doctor may have prescribed Loxalate for another reason.
Loxalate is available only with a doctor's prescription.
Before you take Loxalate
When you must not take it
Do not take Loxalate if you are allergic to medicines containing citalopram or any
of the ingredients listed at the end of this leaflet.
If you have an allergic reaction you may get a skin rash, have difficulty in breathing,
get symptoms of hayfever or feel faint.
Do not take Loxalate if you are currently taking another medicine for depression known
as a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) or have taken one within the last 14 days.
Taking Loxalate with a MAOI may cause a serious reaction with a sudden increase in
body temperature, extremely high blood pressure and convulsions (fits).
MAOIs are medicines used to treat depression and Parkinson's disease. Some examples
of MAOIs include moclobemide (e.g. Aurorix), phenelzine (Nardil), tranylcypromine
(Parnate), selegiline (e.g. Eldepryl).
Do not take Loxalate if you are taking pimozide, a medicine used to treat mental disorders.
Do not take Loxalate after the expiry date printed on the pack or if the packaging
is torn or shows signs of tampering.
If it has expired or is damaged, return it to your pharmacist for disposal.
Before you start to take it
Tell your doctor if you are allergic to any other medicines, foods, dyes or preservatives.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
Your doctor will provide information to you regarding the use of Loxalate, during
pregnancy. You should not stop taking your tablets until you have spoken to your
doctor. Your doctor will discuss the possible risks and benefits of taking Loxalate
The general condition of your newborn baby might be affected by medicines like Loxalate.
Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or wish to breastfeed.
Loxalate passes into breast milk. However, it is not known whether this may affect
your baby. Your doctor will discuss the risks and benefits of taking Loxalate when
Tell your doctor if you have or have had any of the following medical conditions:
bipolar disorder (manic depression)
If you have not told your doctor about any of the above, tell them before you start
Taking other medicines
Tell your doctor if you are taking any other medicines, including any that you buy
without a prescription from a pharmacy, supermarket or health food shop.
Some medicines and Loxalate may interfere with each other. These include:
bupropion, a medicine helping to treat nicotine dependence
medicines used to treat reflux and ulcers, such as cimetidine, omeprazole, esomeprazole
medicines known to prolong bleeding, e.g. aspirin or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory
ticlopidine and warfarin, medicines used to prevent blood clots
mefloquine, an anti-malaria medicine
sumatriptan, used to treat migraines
tramadol, used to relieve pain
some heart medications, e.g. flecainide, propafenone, metoprolol
tryptophan, an amino-acid
lithium, used to treat mood swings and some types of depression
medicines used to treat certain mental and emotional conditions, also called antipsychotics;
e.g. risperidone, thioridazine and haloperidol
medicines affecting nerves, also called neuroleptics e.g. prochlorperazine
tricyclic antidepressants, e.g. imipramine, desipramine, clomipramine, nortryptyline
St John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum), a herbal remedy
other medicines for depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder or pre-menstrual
These medicines may be affected by Loxalate or may affect how well it works. You
may need different amounts of your medicines, or you may need to take different medicines.
Some combinations of medicines may increase the risk of serious side effects and are
potentially life threatening.
Your doctor and pharmacist have more information on medicines to be careful with or
avoid while taking this medicine.
Use in children
Do not give Loxalate to children. Loxalate should not be given to children under 18
years of age as there is no specific information about such use. Always ask your doctor
before giving medicines to children.
Use in elderly
Loxalate can be given to elderly patients with a reduced dose. The effects of Loxalate
in elderly patients are similar to that in other patients.
How to take Loxalate
Follow all directions given to you by your doctor and pharmacist carefully.
They may differ from the information contained in this leaflet.
If you do not understand the instructions on the pack or bottle, ask your doctor or
pharmacist for help.
How much to take
Your doctor will tell you how much Loxalate to take.
The usual dose is 10 mg per day. This may be increased by your doctor to 20 mg per
The recommended maximum dose in elderly patients is 10 mg per day.
It is recommended that patients with liver disease receive an initial dose of 5 mg
daily for the first two weeks. This dose may be increased to 10 mg daily.
How to take it
Swallow the tablets with a full glass of water.
Do not chew the tablets.
Loxalate 10 mg and 20 mg tablets can be divided in half if advised by your doctor
When to take it
Take Loxalate at about the same time each day.
Taking it at the same time each day will have the best effect. It will also help
you to remember when to take it.
Loxalate can be taken with or without food, either in the morning or evening.
How long to take it for
Continue taking your medicine for as long as your doctor tells you.
The length of treatment with Loxalate will depend on how quickly your symptoms improve.
Most medicines of this type take time to work, so do not be discouraged if you do
not feel better right away. The treatment of depression may take at least six months.
If you forget to take it
If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the dose you missed and take your next
dose when you are meant to.
Otherwise, take the missed dose as soon as you remember, and then go back to taking
your tablets as you would normally.
Do not take a double dose to make up for the dose you missed.
If you are not sure what to do, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
If you take too much (overdose)
Immediately telephone your doctor or the Poisons Information Centre (telephone 13
11 26) for advice, or go to Accident and Emergency at the nearest hospital, if you
think you or anyone else may have taken too much Loxalate. Do this even if there
are no signs of discomfort or poisoning.
You may need urgent medical attention.
Symptoms of an overdose may include dizziness, low blood pressure, nausea (feeling
sick), vomiting, agitation, tremor (shaking) and rarely convulsions and coma.
While you are taking Loxalate
Things you must do
If you are about to be started on any new medicine, remind your doctor or pharmacist
that you are taking Loxalate.
Tell any other doctors, dentists and pharmacists who treat you that you are taking
Tell your doctor immediately if you have any suicidal thoughts or other mental/mood
A worsening of depressive symptoms including thoughts of suicide or self-harm may
occur during initial treatment (generally the first one to two months) or when the
doctor changes your dose. These symptoms should be controlled when the full effect
of Loxalate takes place.
Children, adolescents or young adults under 25 years of age are more likely to experience
these effects during the first few months of treatment.
Patients and caregivers should be alert and monitor for these effects.
If you or someone you know is showing any of the following warning signs of suicide
while taking Loxalate, contact your doctor or a mental health professional right away
or go to the nearest hospital for treatment:
worsening of symptoms
thoughts or talk of death or suicide
thoughts or talk of self-harm or harm to others
any recent attempts of self-harm
increase in aggressive behaviour, irritability, or any other unusual changes in behaviour
If you become pregnant while taking Loxalate, tell your doctor immediately.
Keep all your doctor's appointments so that your progress can be checked.
Things you must not do
Do not stop taking Loxalate, or change the dose, without checking with your doctor.
Do not let yourself run out of Loxalate over weekends or holidays.
If you stop Loxalate suddenly or reduce the dose too quickly, you may get unwanted
side effects such as dizziness, nausea (feeling sick) and headache.
Your doctor will tell you how to gradually reduce the amount of Loxalate you are taking
before stopping completely.
Do not take Loxalate to treat any other complaints unless your doctor tells you to.
Do not give Loxalate to anyone else, even if they have the same condition as you.
Things to be careful of
Be careful driving or operating machinery until you know how Loxalate affects you.
Loxalate may cause dizziness, visual disturbances or drowsiness in some people. If
you experience any of these, do not drive, operate machinery or do anything else that
could be dangerous.
Avoid alcohol while you are taking this medicine.
It is not advisable to drink alcohol while you are being treated with Loxalate.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if you do not feel well while you
are taking Loxalate.
Loxalate helps most people with depression, but it may have unwanted side effects
in a few people.
All medicines have side effects. Sometimes they are serious, most of the time they
are not. You may need medical treatment if you get some of the side effects.
Do not be alarmed by this list of possible side effects.
You may not experience any of them.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist to answer any questions you may have.
Tell your doctor if you notice any of the following and they worry you:
clogged or runny nose, sore throat
nausea (feeling sick), vomiting
abdominal pain, indigestion, flatulence
back pain, joint pain
difficulties falling asleep
sleepiness or drowsiness, yawning
sexual disturbances (delayed ejaculation, problems with erection, decreased sexual
drive and women may experience difficulties getting orgasm)
Tell your doctor as soon as possible if you notice any of the following:
dizziness when you stand up due to low blood pressure#
decreased levels of sodium in the blood (the symptoms are feeling sick and unwell
with weak muscles or confused)#
abnormal liver function test (increased amounts of liver enzymes in the blood)#
confusion, panic attacks#, anxiety, nervousness, agitation, abnormal dreams
unusual secretion of breast milk#
increased tendency to develop bruises#
rash, itching, patches of circumscribed swellings.
dark stools with stomach pain
changes in heart rate
The above list includes serious side effects that may require medical attention.
If any of the following happen, tell your doctor immediately or go to Accident and
Emergency at your nearest hospital.
signs of an allergic reaction such as skin rash, itching or hives; swelling of the
face, lips or tongue which may cause difficulty in swallowing or breathing; wheezing
or shortness of breath
high fever, agitation, confusion, trembling and abrupt contractions of muscles may
be signs of a rare condition called serotonin syndrome#
seizures, tremors, movement disorders (involuntary movements of the muscles)#
The above list includes very serious side effects. You may need urgent medical attention
#The side effects marked with a hash (#) are rare side effects that are known to occur
with medicines that work in a similar way to Loxalate.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you notice anything that is making you feel unwell.
Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some people.
There is no evidence that Loxalate is addictive; however, if you suddenly stop taking
Loxalate, you may get side effects. Tell your doctor if you get any side effects
after stopping Loxalate.
After taking Loxalate
Keep Loxalate where children cannot reach it.
A locked cupboard at least one-and-a-half metres above the ground is a good place
to store medicines.
Keep your tablets in the pack or bottle until it is time to take them.
If you take the tablets out of the pack or bottle they may not keep well.
Keep your tablets protected from moisture in a cool dry place, where the temperature
stays below 25 degrees C.
Do not store Loxalate or any other medicine in the bathroom or near a sink. Do not
leave Loxalate in the car or on window stills.
Heat and dampness can destroy some medicines.
If your doctor tells you to stop taking this medicine or the expiry date has passed,
ask your pharmacist what to do with any medicine that is left over.
What it looks like
Loxalate is available in 2 strengths:
Loxalate Tablets 10 mg:
9.5 mm x 5.5 mm oblong normal convex white film-coated tablet debossed "EC|10" on
one side and "G" on the other, supplied in packs of 28 tablets.
Loxalate Tablets 20 mg:
12.5mm x 7 mm oblong normal convex white film-coated tablet debossed "EC|20" on one
side and "G" on the other, supplied in packs of 28 tablets.
The active ingredient in Loxalate is escitalopram oxalate.
Loxalate tablets contain 10 mg or 20 mg of escitalopram (as escitalopram oxalate).
The tablets also contain the following inactive ingredients:
colloidal anhydrous silica
Opadry White OY-LS-28908 (ARTG No. 2596)
The coating on each tablet contains lactose.
The tablets are gluten free.
Loxalate is made in Australia by:
Alphapharm Pty Limited
(ABN 93 002 359 739)
Level 1, 30 The Bond
30 – 34 Hickson Road
Millers Point NSW 2000
Phone: 1800 028 365
Australian registration numbers:
Loxalate 10 mg
AUST R 119964 (blister pack)
Loxalate 20 mg
AUST R 119966 (blister pack)
This leaflet was revised in September 2018.