SERTRALINE (SER tra leen) is used to treat depression. It may also be used to treat obsessive compulsive disorder, panic disorder, post-trauma stress, premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) or social anxiety.
Take this medicine by mouth. Follow the directions on the prescription label.
Before taking your dose, you need to dilute the solution in a beverage. Measure your medicine dose using the dropper in the bottle. Next, place the measured dose in at least 4 ounces (one-half cup) of water, ginger-ale, lemon-lime soda, lemonade or orange juice and mix. Do not mix in grapefruit juice or in any other liquids other than those listed.
Drink all of mixed liquid immediately. Do not mix the dose and store it for later. It must be taken right away. You may take this medicine with or without food. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed. Do not stop taking this medicine suddenly except upon the advice of your doctor. Stopping this medicine too quickly may cause serious side effects or your condition may worsen.
A special MedGuide will be given to you by the pharmacist with each prescription and refill. Be sure to read this information carefully each time.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. While this drug may be prescribed for children as young as 7 years for selected conditions, precautions do apply.
Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
black, tarry stools
changes in vision
elevated mood, decreased need for sleep, racing thoughts, impulsive behavior
fast, irregular heartbeat
feeling faint or lightheaded, falls
feeling agitated, angry, or irritable
hallucination, loss of contact with reality
loss of balance or coordination
loss of memory
painful or prolonged erections
restlessness, pacing, inability to keep still
suicidal thoughts or other mood changes
unusual bleeding or bruising
unusually weak or tired
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
change in appetite or weight
change in sex drive or performance
Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:
MAOIs like Carbex, Eldepryl, Marplan, Nardil, and Parnate
methylene blue (injected into a vein)
This medicine may also interact with the following medications:
aspirin and aspirin-like medicines
certain medicines for depression, anxiety, or psychotic disturbances
certain medicines for fungal infections like ketoconazole, fluconazole, posaconazole, and itraconazole
certain medicines for irregular heart beat like flecainide, quinidine, propafenone
certain medicines for migraine headaches like almotriptan, eletriptan, frovatriptan, naratriptan, rizatriptan, sumatriptan, zolmitriptan
certain medicines for sleep
certain medicines for seizures like carbamazepine, valproic acid, phenytoin
certain medicines that treat or prevent blood clots like warfarin, enoxaparin, dalteparin
NSAIDs, medicines for pain and inflammation, like ibuprofen or naproxen
other medicines that prolong the QT interval (cause an abnormal heart rhythm)
supplements like St. John's wort, kava kava, valerian
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
bipolar disorder or a family history of bipolar disorder
high blood pressure
history of irregular heartbeat
history of low levels of calcium, magnesium, or potassium in the blood
if you often drink alcohol
receiving electroconvulsive therapy
suicidal thoughts, plans, or attempt; a previous suicide attempt by you or a family member
take medicines that treat or prevent blood clots
an unusual or allergic reaction to sertraline, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
pregnant or trying to get pregnant
Tell your doctor if your symptoms do not get better or if they get worse. Visit your doctor or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. Because it may take several weeks to see the full effects of this medicine, it is important to continue your treatment as prescribed by your doctor.
Patients and their families should watch out for new or worsening thoughts of suicide or depression. Also watch out for sudden changes in feelings such as feeling anxious, agitated, panicky, irritable, hostile, aggressive, impulsive, severely restless, overly excited and hyperactive, or not being able to sleep. If this happens, especially at the beginning of treatment or after a change in dose, call your health care professional.
You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medicine affects you. Do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. This reduces the risk of dizzy or fainting spells. Alcohol may interfere with the effect of this medicine. Avoid alcoholic drinks.
This medicine contains a high percentage of alcohol that may interact with medicines used to treat alcohol abuse, like Antabuse (disulfiram). You should not take these medicines together.
Your mouth may get dry. Chewing sugarless gum or sucking hard candy, and drinking plenty of water may help. Contact your doctor if the problem does not go away or is severe.
Some products may contain alcohol. Ask your pharmacist or healthcare provider if this medicine contains alcohol. Be sure to tell all healthcare providers you are taking this medicine. Certain medicines, like metronidazole and disulfiram, can cause an unpleasant reaction when taken with alcohol. The reaction includes flushing, headache, nausea, vomiting, sweating, and increased thirst. The reaction can last from 30 minutes to several hours.