Taking Lexapro (Escitalopram) With Atarax (Hydroxyzine)

In our latest question and answer, the pharmacist discusses whether or not there is an interaction between Lexapro (escitalopram) and Atarax (hydroxyzine).

Taking Lexapro (Escitalopram) With Atarax (Hydroxyzine)
Jun 10, 2018

Cathie asked

I take 20 mg of Lexapro a day. I have psoriatic arthritis and I am having flare, hives and intense itching. I have been prescribed 10 mg of Atarax for itching. Is the Lexapro OK to take?


Two Pills In HandThere is a potentially major interaction between Lexapro (escitalopram) and Atarax (hydroxyzine), although the relevance of the interaction greatly depends on the individual patient

Taking both Lexapro and Atarax can increase the risk of QT prolongation and Torsade de Pointes, which are abnormal heart rhythms. The incidence of this interaction is low, but dangerous nonetheless if it does occur. In general, the combination should be avoided in those with certain risk factors, such as:

  • Pre-existing cardiac disease
  • Electrolyte abnormalities (e.g. high potassium levels)
  • Concurrent therapy with other drugs that affect heart rhythm

Make sure your doctor knows you complete medical history so they can evaluate the risk of prescribing Atarax with Lexapro.

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