Sertraline

 
3.7 (7)
This page displays reviews written by users of all forms of Sertraline. You can also choose to see reviews only for a specific medical condition or brand name.

More about Sertraline

What is sertraline?

  • Sertraline is an antidepressant in a group of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Sertraline affects chemicals in the brain that may become unbalanced and cause depression, panic, anxiety, or obsessive-compulsive symptoms.
  • Sertraline is used to treat depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD).
  • Sertraline may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my doctor before taking sertraline?

  • You may have an increased risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior at the start of treatment with an antidepressant medication, especially if you are under 18 years old. Talk with your doctor about this risk. While you are taking sertraline you will need to be monitored for worsening symptoms of depression and/ or suicidal thoughts during the first weeks of treatment, or whenever your dose is changed. In addition to you watching for changes in your own symptoms, your family or other caregivers should be alert to changes in your mood or symptoms. Your doctor will need to check you at regular visits for at least the first 12 weeks of treatment.
  • Do not use sertraline if you are using pimozide (Orap), or an MAO inhibitor such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), tranylcypromine (Parnate), phenelzine (Nardil), or selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam). Serious and sometimes fatal reactions can occur when these medicines are taken with sertraline. You must wait at least 14 days after stopping an MAO inhibitor before you can take sertraline.
  • Before taking sertraline, tell your doctor if you have:
    • liver or kidney disease;
    • seizures or epilepsy;
    • bipolar disorder (manic depression); or
    • a history of drug abuse or suicidal thoughts.
  • If you have any of these conditions, you may not be able to use sertraline, or you may need a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.
  • FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.
  • It is not known whether sertraline passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take sertraline?

  • Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results from the medication.
  • Take each tablet with water.
  • Try to take the medicine at the same time each day.
  • Try to take sertraline at the same time each day.
  • Sertraline may be taken with or without food.
  • It may take 4 weeks or more for you to start feeling better. Do not stop using sertraline without first talking to your doctor. You may have unpleasant side effects if you stop taking this medication suddenly.
  • Store sertraline at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

  • Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for the next regularly scheduled dose, skip the missed dose and take the next one as directed. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

  • Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have taken too much of this medication. Symptoms of a sertraline overdose may include dizziness, drowsiness, nausea, vomiting, rapid heartbeat, agitation, tremor, confusion, seizures, and coma.

What should I avoid while taking sertraline?

  • Do not take sertraline together with pimozide (Orap), isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam), or tranylcypromine (Parnate).
  • Avoid drinking alcohol, which can increase some of the side effects of sertraline.
  • Avoid using other medicines that make you sleepy (such as cold medicine, other pain medication, muscle relaxants). They can add to sleepiness caused by sertraline.
  • Sertraline can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.

What are the possible side effects of sertraline?

  • Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: skin rash or hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Contact your doctor promptly if you have any of the following side effects, especially if they are new symptoms or if they get worse: mood changes, anxiety, panic attacks, trouble sleeping, irritability, agitation, aggressiveness, severe restlessness, mania (mental and/ or physical hyperactivity), thoughts of suicide or hurting yourself.
  • Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
    • seizure (convulsions);
    • tremors, shivering, muscle stiffness or twitching;
    • problems with balance or coordination; or
    • agitation, confusion, sweating, fast heartbeat.
  • Other less serious side effects are more likely to occur, such as:
    • feeling nervous, restless, or unable to sit still;
    • drowsiness, dizziness, weakness;
    • sleep problems (insomnia);
    • nausea, diarrhea, dry mouth, or changes in appetite or weight; or
    • decreased sex drive, impotence, or difficulty having an orgasm.
  • Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

What drug(s) may interact with sertraline?

Sertraline has the potential to interact with a variety of medications, check with your healthcare professional. The following list contains some of these interactions.

Do not take sertraline with any of the following medications:

  • astemizole (Hismanal®)
  • cisapride (Propulsid®)
  • pimozide (Orap®)
  • terfenadine (Seldane®)
  • thioridazine (Mellaril®)
  • medicines called MAO inhibitors-phenelzine (Nardil®), tranylcypromine (Parnate®), isocarboxazid (Marplan®), selegiline (Eldepryl®)

Sertraline may also interact with the following medications:

  • amphetamine
  • bosentan
  • carbamazepine
  • certain diet drugs (dexfenfluramine, fenfluramine, phentermine, sibutramine)
  • certain migraine headache medicines (almotriptan, eletriptan, frovatriptan, naratriptan, rizatriptan, sumatriptan, zolmitriptan)
  • cimetidine
  • cyclosporine
  • dextroamphetamine
  • dextromethorphan
  • diazepam
  • doxercalciferol
  • furazolidone
  • linezolid
  • other medicines for mental depression, mania, anxiety, psychosis or difficulty sleeping
  • phenobarbital
  • prescription pain medications
  • procarbazine
  • rifabutin
  • rifampin
  • rifapentine
  • selegiline
  • St. John's wort
  • tolbutamide
  • tramadol
  • warfarin

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Medicine containing Sertraline

This page uses publicly available data from the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services; NLM is not responsible for the page and product and does not endorse or recommend this or any other product.

Reviews for Sertraline

See reviews for a different combination of brand names and medical conditions:
     

7 reviews

 
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(4)
 
(2)
2 stars
 
(0)
1 star
 
(0)
Overall rating 
 
3.7
Overall satisfaction 
 
4.0  (7)
Efficacy  
 
3.9  (7)
Lack of side effects 
 
3.2  (7)
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Efficacy
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Relevant Brand Name and Medical Condition
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Please tell us about your experience with this medicine
I have been taking Zoloft for about 10 months

I have been taking Zoloft for about 10 months now at 50 mgs. The first time I took this drug I was so afraid of having a side effect that I had a severe panic attack. I thought it was a bad reaction to the drug but finally realized that it had nothing to do with the drug so I tried it again. For the first week I kinda felt like a zombie...I was just dragging like I was in slow motion. That feeling went away after the first week and a half,,,,and I started to feel "normal" after a couple of weeks. My panic attacks subsided and I was able to sleep at night. I have had very few panic-like episodes since being on Zoloft. It has definitely worked for me. My dr says I have to stay on for a full year, and then come down to 25 mg and then come off. I must say that my sex drive has decreased...it's still there but it takes awhile to "get me there"... I have experienced some hair loss though and am not sure if its due to the medication. I haven't seen that listed as a side affect and am wondering if anyone else has e peri ended the same?

Relevant Brand Name and Medical Condition

Brand Name
Zoloft
Medical Condition
Panic Disorder

Additional Information

How long have you taken this medicine for?
6 months - 2 years
Reviewed anonymously by a forum member
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prescribed zoloft for mild depression

i was prescribed zoloft for mild depression (i think thats what she told me i cant remember this was months ago) and intrusive thoughts she started me on a few low doses and they didnt work but now im taking one 100mg a night and it really helps it hasnt made all the thoughts away but they're not as frequent as they were and i can kinda let them pass by and not get upset by them

Relevant Brand Name and Medical Condition

Brand Name
Zoloft
Medical Condition
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Additional Information

How long have you taken this medicine for?
1 month - 6 months
Reviewed anonymously by a forum member
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I had horrible side effects

I had horrible side effects starting this medication and it caused extreme lethargy, to the point I had problems at work for a while. The most concerning part however was the way this medication made me feel - just completely off kilter in my head. After I stopped taking it, I honestly didn't experience any withdrawal and have since instead asked my Dr. about other options. Viibryd seems to be a better choice so far, Zoloft definitely wasn't for me.

Relevant Brand Name and Medical Condition

Brand Name
Zoloft
Medical Condition
Depression

Additional Information

How long have you taken this medicine for?
6 months - 2 years
Reviewed anonymously by a forum member
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It really took effect within a few months

This has helped me beyond belief. I went from being very suicidal to being able to live a normal day to day life with very much happiness in my life. It really took effect within a few months of starting the medicine.

Relevant Brand Name and Medical Condition

Brand Name
Zoloft
Medical Condition
Depression

Additional Information

How long have you taken this medicine for?
More than 2 years
Reviewed anonymously by a forum member
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butterflybabyxoxo is a member of the Pharmacy Reviewer forum
Total Posts: 27
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works.

Excellent med no side effects

Relevant Brand Name and Medical Condition

Brand Name
Zoloft
Medical Condition
Panic Disorder

Additional Information

How long have you taken this medicine for?
More than 2 years
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Sertraline for OCD and Depression

My OCD, depression, and social anxiety were treated by a psychiatrist with 200 mg of sertraline for a little over two years. First let me say that this drug is not for the faint of heart. The adjustment period to the medication is very difficult. I experienced worsening depression, major irritability, and social ideations for the first week I took it and at each dose increase.

As far as my symptoms go, the medicine was most successful in treating OCD and social anxiety. At 200 mg I experienced drastic reduction in my obsessive, intrusive negative thoughts and felt remarkably comfortable in social situations. Its effect on depression was less noticeable but I did experience an overall sense of well being.

The side effect profile was highly unpleasant. Extreme difficulty ejaculating to the point where everyone involved wants to give up. Very low sex drive. Urge to constantly sleep.

Withdrawal is also very difficult. Severe insomnia, irritability, fits of wanting to cry.

Does what it's supposed to, but comes with some baggage for sure.

Relevant Brand Name and Medical Condition

Brand Name
Zoloft
Medical Condition
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Additional Information

How long have you taken this medicine for?
More than 2 years
W
WhatWeDoIsSecret
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My experience with Sertraline for Panic Disorder

I was prescribed and took Sertraline (generic Zoloft) daily for approximately 8 years total for Panic Disorder (and to a lesser extent Anxiety Disorder). It worked very well for limiting panic attacks and reducing anxiety levels. Was not 100% effective for elimination of Panic attacks, but it certainly reduced the frequency. I was 50 mg for about 3 years then went to 75mg for about 3 years I was rx’ed up to 100mg/day for about a year . ( It seemed like this is about when the “poop-out” phase began -medical term is Tachyphylaxis I think). Then 150mg/day (6 months maybe), then 200 mg/day (a few months). Side effects for me (primarily libido related) were minor at 50mg and 75mg. Moderate at 100mg. Bad (felt very spacey and disassociated plus near zero sex drive) at 150mg and 200mg per day. Also the Anxiety/Panic reduction I was getting when I was getting the first 6 years at 50mg and 75 mg was disappearing even as I was increasing dosages to the 150 and 200 levels. So between the side effects at high dose and the med basically completely “pooped-out” after what I considered a good run, I decided to do a slow taper which I did over 3 to 4 months. I have no first hand experience using Sertraline for Depression.

Tapering experience – My experience was that I found this med many times easier to taper off of than Paxil . No brain zaps or shakes during taper and no PAWS after taper was complete (maybe because even at high doses the med had pooped out on me or maybe because I just went slow, or both). My PCP and Psych both that in their experience Zoloft is typically easier to taper off of than Paxil.

Relevant Brand Name and Medical Condition

Brand Name
Zoloft
Medical Condition
Panic Disorder

Additional Information

How long have you taken this medicine for?
More than 2 years
Reviewed anonymously by a forum member
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