Zoloft belongs to a group of drugs with antidepressant activity. Its active substance is sertralin that prevents the reuptake of serotonin. The maintenance of normal concentrations of the “happiness hormone” in the brain is the main objective of Zoloft. Serotonin is involved in many processes in the human body, maintaining the health. Usually this substance is produced in nervous tissue, and, when it is in a free state, it helps conduct nerve impulses. When serotonin is captured back into the neurons, this leads to the following consequences: the number of newly synthesized substances is reduced, the nerve impulses are impeded, the nerve cells “can’t take the stress” – and then depression comes. Thus, the longer this “happiness hormone” remains in a free state – the more it will be produced, the better the nerve conduction will be.
Indications for use
social phobia (social anxiety disorder); OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder); PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder); Episodic paroxysmal anxiety (panic disorder); Depressive States of various etiologies (prevention and therapy).
Absolute contraindications: Concurrent use of sertraline with a monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIS), and pimozide; under 6 years of age; Hypersensitivity to the drug.
It should be used with caution (due to increased likelihood of complications): Epilepsy; Marked reduction of body weight; Organic brain damage (including mental retardation); Renal and/or hepatic insufficiency. Controlled studies on the use of sertraline during pregnancy have not been conducted; therefore, it is allowed to prescribe the drug to pregnant women only if the expected benefit to the mother greatly outweighs the potential risk of abnormalities to the fetus. Women of the reproductive age who take Zoloft for the treatment, should use effective contraception. Zoloft passes into breast milk. The drug in breastfeeding is not recommended because safety in this case is not validated. If treatment is needed, then you should stop breast-feeding for some time.
- Cardiovascular system (CVS): tachycardia, palpitations, hypertension;
- Digestive system: abdominal pain, dry mouth, pancreatitis, dyspepsia (nausea, vomiting, flatulence, diarrhea, constipation);
- musculoskeletal: muscle cramps, arthralgia;
- Respiratory system: yawning, bronchospasm;
- Central and peripheral nervous system: paresthesia, syncope, migraine, headache, dizziness, tremor, drowsiness, insomnia, anxiety, hypomania, mania, agitation, hallucinations, euphoria, psychosis, decreased libido, nightmares, suicide, coma, extra-pyramidal disorders (akathisia, bruxism, dyskinesia, gait disorders);
- Urinary system: enuresis, delay or urinary incontinence;
Reproductive system and breast: galactorrhea, gynecomastia, sexual dysfunction (reduced potency, delayed ejaculation), menstrual irregularities, priapism;
- The organs of vision: mydriasis, blurred vision;
- Endocrine system: hypothyroidism, hyperprolactinemia, syndrome of inappropriate secretion of anti-diuretic hormone (ADH);
- Hepatobiliary: jaundice, hepatitis, liver failure;
- Allergic reactions: itching, urticaria, anaphylactic reaction;
- Other: weakness, ringing in the ears, congestion of blood to the face, or redness of the skin, alopecia, face edema, angioedema, periorbital edema, photosensitivity reaction, increased sweating, purpura, loss of appetite, until anorexia (rarely – an increase), the increase or reduction of body weight, bleeding (including gastrointestinal, nasal, or hematuria), peripheral edema, sometimes syndrome of Stevens-Johnson and epidermal necrolysis.
In case of overdose of sertraline there are no identified significant side effects, even in the case of the use of high doses. The use of Zoloft with other substances/drugs or alcohol can cause severe poisoning, until coma and death.