Highlighting uses, dosage, how to take and discontinue

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Z is for Zoloft

Zoloft’s Side Effects, Warnings, etc. >>

Brand & Generic Names; Drug Classes

US brand name: Zoloft
Generic name: sertraline

Drug Class(es)

Primary drug class: Antidepressants
Additional drug class(es): SSRIs, Anxiolytics/Anti-anxiety

Approved & Off-Label Uses (Indications)

Zoloft’s US FDA Approved Treatment(s)

  • Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) approved 30 December 1991
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) in both adults (approved 28 October 1996) and children (approved October 1997)
  • Panic Disorder (July 1997)
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Zoloft was approved for short-term (acute) use on 7 December 1999 (fitting date), and for chronic (long-term) use on 16 August 2001 (just in time!).
  • Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) (approved 20 May 2002)
  • Social Anxiety Disorder (approved 10 February 2003)

Uses Approved Overseas but not in the US

Off-Label Uses of Zoloft



When & If Zoloft Will Work

Zoloft’s Usual Onset of Action (when it starts working)

Like all SSRIs anywhere from a couple days to over a month, although you should more awake and energetic in two to four days. If you don’t feel any positive benefit after four-six weeks, then you should talk to your doctor about either another SSRI or trying a med that hits another neurotransmitter.

Likelihood of Working

Zoloft is better for conditions in the anxiety spectrum than those in the depression spectrum. Which is funny given how agitated and nervous it makes a lot of people feel. Zoloft does work well for depression defined by sleeping too much, eating too much, and withdrawing from the world.

Taking and Discontinuing

How to Take Zoloft

In the PI sheet Pfizer recommends:
50 mg once a day for adults with MDD and OCD
. That’s where you start, that’s where you stay.
For adults with PTSD, panic & social anxiety disorders - start at 25 mg once a day and after a week increase it to 50 mg a day.

We suggest:

  • Everybody starts at 12.5–25mg and waits at least two weeks, if you can, before increasing by 12.5–25mg a day.
  • And increase the dosage only if you need to.

How to Stop Taking Zoloft (discontinuation / withdrawal)

The usual way with SSRIs. Reduce your dosage by 12.5–25mg each week. If the discontinuation syndrome is too harsh you have two options, getting a prescription for the oral solution and reducing your dosage by whatever you can tolerate, or getting a prescription for 10mg fluoxetine capsules and take 20mg a day (if you’re at 25mg of Zoloft) for two weeks and 10mg a day for another two weeks.

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Last modified on Sun, 10 May, 2015 at 18:09:18 by JerodPoorePage Author Date created Wednesday, 06 April 2011, at 14:28:00
“Zoloft (sertraline): Uses and Using” by Jerod Poore is copyright © 2011 Jerod Poore Published online 2011/04/06

Zoloft, and all other drug names on this page and used throughout the site, are the trademarks of someone else.

will probably have the name of the manufacturer and trademark owner (they’re not always the same company) at or near the very bottom. Or ask Google who the owner is. The way pharmaceutical companies buy each other and swap products like Monopoly™ real estate, the ownership of the trademark may have changed without my noticing. It may of changed hands by the time you finished reading this article.



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