Q. Will erection problem persist after discontinuation of antidepressant?

Answered by
Dr. Vivekanandan. G
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 04, 2016 and last reviewed on: Sep 15, 2020

Hello doctor,

I am 23 years old and I am on Citalopram, Buspirone, and Valium. In the past few weeks, I have stopped taking Valium. I am taking only 2.5 mg to wean off and just today I discontinued the Citalopram as well after gradually cutting down from 40 mg to 10 over the last two weeks. I still take 15 mg of Buspirone two times a day. In the past, maybe two years or so I have noticed it is more difficult to achieve and keep an erection. I do not seem to get a full erection like I used to. I do not really wake up with an erection in the morning except sometimes when I have to pee. But, that too not a full one. Also, I have difficulty in urinating to where I feel as if I never really empty my bladder and I always feel the urge to urinate. This makes me ejaculate quicker and makes it hard to sleep at night.

I have had physical checkups and blood work and they told me everything is normal and it must be the medication. But, when I searched on the internet, I noticed a few reports of people that they have never recovered sexual function after taking antidepressants and it made me very concerned. I also smoke marijuana daily and I have been smoking for almost 10 years. To the contrary, it has never given me problems with my erection. I would like to know if there is any valid claim that this could persist after discontinuing the medication. What I can do to fix it? Even, Cialis does not seem to have the desired effect on me. Please help.



Welcome to

  • In your case, the reason must be marijuana. I think it is better you stop that and also get your early morning serum testosterone assay done.

For further information consult a urologist online -->

Thank you doctor,

I stopped the medication this morning and so the side effects are still present. I was just wondering if there is any truth to claim that it can persist after stopping. I have been smoking marijuana for almost 10 years and did not have this problem. Actually, marijuana seemed to be the thing that helped counteract the sexual side effects. Do you still believe it is due to the marijuana? If I stop marijuana, then how long would it take to see an improvement?



Welcome back to

  • Smoking marijuana can cause damage to vascular endothelium of the penile arteries, thereby causing erectile dysfunction in the long run.
  • Also, it can lead to a reduction in your serum testosterone levels, which may be the cause for reduced morning erections.
  • It usually takes six months to one year after stopping marijuana to get back good quality erections. Meanwhile, keep yourself physically active and take plenty of fruits.
  • If necessary, you can take testosterone supplement, as patch, tablet, gel or injection, based on your laboratory report.

For further information consult a urologist online -->

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