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Generic Prozac


Nature and use of the drug

Prozac or Flouxetine Hydrochloride is a drug used to treat depression and is one of the medicines under the Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor or SSRI class. This drug is approved for the treatment of depression. Aside from this, it is also used for treating obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder, and eating disorder called bulimia nervosa.

The emergence of new anti-depressant drugs did not stop the popularity of Prozac. It is third in over-all ranking in terms of the most prescribed drug for depression.

How this medicine works

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter inside neurons in the central nervous system. It plays a vital role to regulate various human emotional experiences such as anger, sexuality, appetite, mood, sleep, and aggression. Studies have revealed that if a person has a low level of serotonin in his body, he will be vulnerable to various psychological disorders such as anxiety and bipolar disorders. In some cases, there are also religious experiences, which patients with low serotonin levels are said to encounter.

The SSRI medicine attempts to control the level of serotonin. It aims to keep the level high by inhibiting the neuron's (brain cells} reabsorption of the neurotransmitter after transmittal has been done with a neural impulse or electrical discharge.

Dosage and administration

Fluoxetine drug is available in 10, 20, 40 and 60 mg dosage. Studies have confirmed that a 20 mg dosage/day of Prozac will result to a positive response in the treatment of major depressive disorder. This dosage is recommended taken every morning. Patients may only feel the full benefit of the drug from 4 weeks until up to 3 months of taking the treatment.

What to expect -- side effects

Studies made between Prozac and placebo tests revealed a number of side effects with the use of the drug. The side effects are seen in these areas: the digestive, cardiovascular and nervous system. The top side effects are weight gain, headache, nausea, insomnia, and nervousness. Though it has a wide variety of side effects, patients can generally tolerated them. There are possible sexual related side effects. These are anorgasmia -- a disorder wherein the patient cannot reach orgasm -- a decrease in libido, impotence and sexual dysfunction. However, these sexual disorders are primarily psychiatric in nature and their emergence may just be a result of anxiety caused by taking the medicine or other reasons.

If ever a number of more serious psychiatric side effects are noticed during the treatment of a major depressive disorder, the treatment should be stopped or the dosage must be lessened.

On the other hand, immediate discontinuation of this medicine has adverse effects on the patient, too. The most common of which is mania or hypomania, psychological disorders reflective of unusual mood and thought patterns. Because of this, patients under theraphy of this medicine should be well monitored during the tapering period.

The following symptoms are signs of an overdose: tremor, nervousness, elevated blood pressure, and movement disorder, although the effect of an overdose vary from person to person. A dosage that is fatal to a particular patient may be not enough to give serious damage to another patient. In this regard, when you suspected an overdose, bring yourself immediately to the nearest hospital to get the proper treatment.

Precaution to take

Nursing mothers are prohibited to take Prozac since components of medicine is excreted through breastmilk. If an infant ingest it through breastmilk, it may prove to be fatal.

Death has been reported with the use of the drug when patients started experiencing systemic symptoms such as vasculitis or the inflammation of blood vessels, which can impair a number of organs in the body, and a chronic autoimmune disease called systemic lupus erythematosus or SLE, which attacks the cells of the body causing serious tissue damage. These diseases usually occur with patients taking the drug that develops rash. So a simple rash should be treated as a serious matter.


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