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Zoloft is an effective antidepressant drug belonging to the family of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). It is used to treat a number of anxiety and depressive disorders including depression, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), anxiety disorder, panic disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) etc.
The drug mainly acts on the central nervous system to control the concentration of the chemicals that affect the mood and other CNS symptoms. Zoloft is being marketed by Pfizer Inc.in tablet form. The drug was approved by the FDA in 1997 for the treatment of depression and related illnesses.
The active component of Zoloft is Sertraline which is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). The drug inhibits the uptake of serotonin by the platelets and by the neurons located in the CNS. Zoloft impedes the uptake of serotonin into the CNS more than the uptake of dopamine and norepinephrine, thereby exerting a soothing effect on the CNS and producing a positive effect in patients suffering from depressive disorders1.
Read up more about Sertraline, the drug included in Zoloft, here.
Zoloft is an antidepressant used in the treatment of
Major Depressive Disorder: persistent depression that hinders the daily life activities, characterized by sleep changes, appetite changes, agitation, loss of interest in hobbies, decreased libido, lethargy, felling of worthlessness, decreased concentration span and suicidal thought process.
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD): Unreasonable, recurrent and persistent ideas (obsessions) or behaviors (compulsions) that a person feels the need to repeat over and over.
Panic Disorder: Recurrent episodes of acute fear or anxiety accompanied by palpitations, sweating, trembling, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, abdominal discomfort, dizziness and depersonalization.
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: Recurrent episodes of acute fear or anxiety following exposure to a psychologically or physically distressing event.
Social Anxiety Disorder: Intense fear of being in social setups or of performing in front of people.
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD): Period of depressed mood, irritability, appetite and sleep changes, lethargy, decreased concentration etc. during the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle in women.
The drug is available as a packet of 30 oral tablets each containing 50mg of Sertraline. The dosage of Zoloft varies with the condition the drug is being used to treat. The recommended adult dosage guidelines are as follows.
Major Depressive Disorder and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: One 50 mg tablet once daily
Panic Disorder, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Social Anxiety Disorder: One 50 mg tablet once daily
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder: One 50 mg tablet once daily; can be increased to 150 mg per day
The following side effects have been reported with the use of Zoloft tablets.
The following precautionary measures must be kept in mind while taking Zoloft.
Zoloft is contraindicated in:
People with hepatic impairment should avoid taking Zoloft as the drug is mainly eliminated by the liver.
People taking Zoloft should be closely monitored for even slight changes in the behavior or worsening of the depressive symptoms as they might be indicative of suicidal thinking.
People at risk for Bipolar disorder should not take Zoloft as the drug may trigger manic episodes in such patients.
Concomitant use of Zoloft with 5-hydroxytryptamine receptor agonists should be closely monitored.
Zoloft should be very carefully administered in patients receiving anticonvulsants or those with epilepsy or seizure disorders.
If a patient is to discontinue the use of Zoloft, the drug should be tapered off instead of abrupt cessation as stopping the drug suddenly can lead to behavioral disturbances.
Patients taking anticoagulants, Aspirin or Warfarin etc. or NSAIDS should take care while using Zoloft as it increases the risk of bleeding.
Patients with systemic diseases should exercise caution when taking Zoloft.
Concomitant use of alcohol and Zoloft should be avoided.
Women taking Zoloft should inform the doctor if they intend to get pregnant.
Even though there is no clear cut evidence of the drug being secreted in the breast milk, breastfeeding women should always inform their doctor if they are to receive Zoloft.
Zoloft has been approved for the treatment of OCD in children. However, it should not be prescribed to patients younger than 18 years for the purpose of treating depression.
Zoloft is an FDA approved antidepressant drug belonging to the class of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) which is used for the treatment of depressive illnesses.
Zoloft contains Sertraline which is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) and selectively interferes with the uptake of serotonin, a mood stabilizing chemical, within the central nervous system.
Zoloft should be stored at room temperature at 25oC (77oF) in a cool and dry place away from heat, moisture and light sources. As with all other drugs, Zoloft should be kept out of reach of children.
Zoloft is available online at Youdrugstore in the form of packet of 30 tablets.
Sertraline 50mg can be taken as an alternative to Zoloft.
The drug should be taken orally with fluids. It can be taken with or without any food. Take the drug exactly as prescribed by the doctor.
Zoloft is commonly prescribed for depressive disorders including major depressive disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorder and premenstrual dysphoric disorder.
Overdosing on Zoloft can produce signs and symptoms of bradycardia, vomiting, dizziness, agitation, tremors etc. In case of accidental drug overdose, seek immediate medical care, report to the nearest medical center or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
If you happen to miss a dose of Zoloft, take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if the time is quite close to the time of taking the next dose of the drug, do not take the missed dose to avoid drug overdose.