Can You Take Lexapro and Zofran Together?

In this article, we will first explain what Lexapro and Zofran are, their individual properties, uses, side effects, and interactions with other drugs. Then we will understand how these two drugs can potentially interact together, and answer whether you can take Lexapro and Zofran simultaneously.
Frederika Malichová

Frederika Malichová

Neuroscientist at the University Of Cambridge.

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Taking Lexapro and Zofran Simultaneously

It is not recommended to take Lexapro and Zofran at the same time, even if you do not experience any serious effects. Lexapro and Zofran both affect serotonin levels in the brain, which can increase the risk of serotonin syndrome, a potentially dangerous condition.

Always consult your healthcare provider when unsure about combining drugs. They can provide personalized advice based on your health history and current medications.

What is Zofran ?

Zofran, or ondansetron, is a medication that is used to treat nausea and vomiting. 

Zofran works on the principle of blocking the action of serotonin [1], which is a naturally occurring substance in the brain that can trigger nausea or vomiting. 

Originally, Zofran was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to be used to manage nausea caused by chemotherapy or surgery [1]. It can also be prescribed to treat nausea during pregnancy, although it is not FDA-approved for such purposes [1]. 

Oftentimes, it is also given in hospitals via IV after cesarean delivery if the individual is experiencing some of the symptoms [2].

What is Lexapro?

Lexapro, also known as escitalopram is an antidepressant

It belongs to the group of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) [3, 4]. This group of drugs works by increasing the activity of a chemical known as serotonin in your brain, which helps regulate your mood [3].

Lexapro is generally prescribed to people who have depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, or different types of anxiety [3, 5].

The normal dosage is once a day with most people taking 10-20 milligrams [3, 4, 5].

The risks of combining Zofran and Lexapro: Serotonin Syndrome

Combining Lexapro and Zoloft is not recommended, but the interaction between the two can vary and does not always have to cause any serious problems.

The biggest worry is that both drugs increase serotonin levels in the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is often associated with depression or anxiety, but it also fulfills other functions, such as mood, behavior, appetite or sleep.

While this may sound surprising, it turns out that having too much serotonin is extremely dangerous and can even be lethal.

Further, negative effects of the interaction between Zofran and Lexapro may increase the risk of irregular heartbeat [10].

Therefore, it is crucial to consult with a healthcare provider such as a doctor or a pharmacist before combining these two medications.

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Frederika Malichová

Frederika Malichová

Frederika is a postgraduate researcher at the University of Cambridge, where she investigates new biomarkers for Frontotemporal Dementia and other tauopathies. Her research has been published at prestigious conferences such as the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference 2023. She obtained her BSc in Biomedical Sciences from UCL, where she worked closely with the UK Dementia Research Institute.