Fluoxetine (By mouth)

Introduction

Fluoxetine (floo-OX-e-teen)

Treats depression, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), eating disorders, panic disorders, and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD). This medicine is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI).

Brand Name(s)

Prozac, Prozac Weekly, Sarafem, Gaboxetine, Sentraflox AM-10, Sentroxatine, Fluoxetine

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

Do not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to fluoxetine. Do not use this medicine within 14 days of using an MAO inhibitor (MAOI) such as Eldepryl®, Marplan®, Nardil®, Parnate®, methylene blue, or linezolid (Zyvox®). Do not use thioridazine (Mellaril®) or an MAOI for at least 5 weeks after you stop taking fluoxetine. Do not use this medicine with pimozide (Orap®).

How to Use This Medicine

Capsule, Delayed Release Capsule, Liquid, Tablet

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Your dose may need to be changed several times in order to find out what works best for you. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.Some people need to take this medicine every day, and some people need to take it only once a week. Make sure you understand your own schedule.
  • You may need to take this medicine for a month or longer before you feel better. If you feel that the medicine is not working well, do not take more than your normal dose. Call your doctor for instructions.
  • Measure the oral liquid medicine with a marked measuring spoon, oral syringe, or medicine cup.
  • Take your medicine at the same time each day.
  • Swallow the delayed-release capsule whole. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
  • This medicine should come with a Medication Guide. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions. Ask your pharmacist for the Medication Guide if you do not have one.

If a dose is missed:

  • For people who take this medicine every day (Prozac® or Sarafem®): If you miss a dose or forget to take your medicine, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to take the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
  • For people who take this medicine once a week (Prozac® Weekly): If you miss a dose or forget to take your medicine, take it as soon as you can. Then go back to your regular schedule the next week. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are using St John's wort, digoxin (Lanoxin®), fentanyl (Sublimaze®), lithium (Eskalith®, Lithane®, Lithobid®), tramadol (Ultram®), tryptophan supplements, vinblastine (Velban®), a sedative or anxiety medicine (such as buspirone, Buspar®, alprazolam, Xanax®, diazepam, Valium®), medicine to treat migraine headaches (such as rizatriptan, sumatriptan, zolmitriptan, Frova®, Maxalt®, Relpax®, Zomig®), an NSAID pain or arthritis medicine (such as aspirin, diclofenac, ibuprofen, naproxen, Advil®, Aleve®, Celebrex®, Voltaren®), or a blood thinner (such as warfarin, Coumadin®, Jantoven®).
  • Tell your doctor if you are using other medicine to treat depression (such as amitriptyline, nortriptyline, desipramine, fluoxetine, mirtazapine, paroxetine, Celexa®, Elavil®, Lexapro®, Norpramin®, Paxil®, Zoloft®), medicine to treat mental illness (such as clozapine, haloperidol, promethazine, Clozaril®, Haldol®, Phenergan®), medicine for seizures (such as carbamazepine, phenytoin, Dilantin®, Tegretol®), a diuretic (water pill, such as furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide, Lasix®), or medicine for heart rhythm problems (such as flecainide, propafenone, Rythmol®, Tambocor®).
  • Tell your doctor if you are using any medicines that make you sleepy. These include sleeping pills, cold and allergy medicine, narcotic pain relievers, and sedatives.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease, liver disease, bleeding problems, diabetes, epilepsy or seizures, glaucoma, heart disease, low sodium in the blood, a recent heart attack, or a history of mania or drug abuse. Tell your doctor if you are receiving electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).
  • For some children, teenagers, and young adults, this medicine can increase thoughts of suicide. Tell your doctor right away if you start to feel more depressed and have thoughts about hurting yourself. Report any unusual thoughts or behaviors that trouble you, especially if they are new or get worse quickly. Make sure the doctor knows if you have trouble sleeping, get upset easily, have a big increase in energy, or start to act reckless. Also tell the doctor if you have sudden or strong feelings, such as feeling nervous, angry, restless, violent, or scared. Let the doctor know if you or anyone in your family has bipolar disorder (manic-depressive) or has tried to commit suicide.
  • This medicine may cause a serious condition called serotonin syndrome, when taken with certain medicines. Call your doctor right away if you have a fever, confusion, mental changes, restlessness, fast heartbeat, muscle spasms, trouble walking, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.
  • Do not stop using this medicine suddenly without asking your doctor. You may need to slowly decrease your dose before stopping it completely.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous until you know how this medicine affects you.
  • This medicine may raise or lower your blood sugar, or it may cover up symptoms of very low blood sugar (hypoglycemia).
  • Your doctor will need to check your blood at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Anxiety, restlessness, fever, sweating, muscle spasms, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, seeing or hearing things that are not there
  • Blistering, peeling, or red skin rash
  • Confusion, weakness, and muscle twitching
  • Feeling more excited or energetic than usual
  • Headache, trouble concentrating, memory problems, unsteadiness
  • Large weight loss
  • Seizures
  • Trouble breathing
  • Trouble sleeping, unusual dreams
  • Unusual behavior, thoughts of hurting yourself or others
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Blurry vision
  • Changes in appetite with weight gain or loss
  • Headache
  • Mild skin rash
  • Nausea, diarrhea
  • Sexual problems
  • Sleepiness

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last Reviewed on 06/12/2013

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This page was last updated: June 18, 2013

         
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