Sertraline HCL

What condition does Sertraline HCL treat?

Sertraline HCL is used for the treatment of;

  • Depression
  • Social anxiety disorder
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • A form of anxiety called panic disorder

This is a type of medicine called a selective reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant. Sertraline HCL helps restore the balance of a certain natural substance in the brain. 

How does Sertraline HCL work?

Sertraline HCL works by enhancing the activity of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is known to be involved in regulating emotions, mood, and behavior. In depression and anxiety disorders, there is a decreased amount of serotonin released in the brain. This medication stops the serotonin that has been released from being reabsorbed back into the nerve cells in the brain. This helps to prolong its effects and over time this helps to lighten the mood and relieve depression. It also relieves symptoms of anxiety such as panic and fear.

It can take between two to four weeks before this drug starts to work. You must keep taking it even if doesn’t seem to make much difference at first. You’ll usually need to keep taking Sertraline HCL every day for several months and for at least 6 months after you feel better. 

How to use Sertraline HCL?

Take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor. This is usually used once a day either in the morning or evening. You may take each dose with food. Swallow the medicine as a whole without crushing or chewing it. 

The dosage is based on your medical condition, age, and response to the treatment. To lessen your risk of side effects, your doctor may let you start this medication at a low dose and slowly increase it. Follow the instructions of your doctor carefully. Take this medicine regularly to get the best benefit from it. Keep taking this medication even if you feel well. Some conditions may become worse when this drug is suddenly stopped. Let your doctor know if your condition does not improve or if it gets worse.

What are the possible side effects of Sertraline HCL?

Common side effects:

  • Drowsiness
  • Sleepiness
  • Sleep problems
  • Nervousness
  • Nausea
  • Skin rash 
  • Headache 
  • Constipation 
  • Diarrhea 
  • Changes in appetite
  • Dry mouth
  • Weight loss

Tell your doctor if you have serious side effects such as:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting 
  • Loss of appetite
  • Very stiff muscles
  • High fever
  • Sweating
  • Fats or uneven heartbeats
  • Feeling like you might pass out
  • Loss of coordination 
  • Weakness
  • Shallow breathing
  • Breathing that stops 
  • Overactive flexes 
  • Confusion 

What are the precautions in taking Sertraline HCL?

  • Sertraline HCL is not recommended for use in people who have taken MAOI for the last 14 days, people with uncontrolled epilepsy, and with severe liver problems. 
  • This drug should be used with caution in people with a history of mania, who receives electroconvulsive therapy, with diabetes, glaucoma, heart disease, or who have a low level of potassium. 
  • This should also be used carefully in people who are taking medicines that affect blood clotting. 
  • Do not take any dose of this drug if you are allergic. Let your doctor know if you have any allergies.