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Fluoxetine Fact Card

An antidepressant medication belonging to a group of medicines called SSRIs

Brand Names Oxactin, Prozac, Prozep
Used For Depression, anxiety, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Bulimia
Doseage Usually one capsule once a day but doses will depend on what condition is being treated
Side Effects Common side effects: Nausea, dry mouth, headaches, feeling anxious, dizziness, flushing Serious side effects requiring immediate medical help: Thoughts of harming or killing yourself, itchy rash with swollen tongue/lips, wheeze or shortness of breath
Warnings Avoid alcohol while taking fluoxetine. Seek advice from your doctor if suffering from epilepsy, mania or hypomania, heart/liver/kidney problems, glaucoma or diabetes.
Pregnancy If you become pregnant or are planning to have a baby speak to your doctor at the earliest opportunity

Fluoxetine, often referred to by one of its trade names -Prozac, is an antidepressant which belongs to a class of antidepressants known as SSRIs (selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors).

What is Fluoxetine used to treat?

It is mainly used to treat depression but can also be used in anxiety disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder and bulimia.

How does Fluoxetine work?

Fluoxetine works by stopping re-absorption of serotonin in the brain, which keeps the level of serotonin higher. Serotonin is a naturally occurring chemical in the brain that acts as a messenger that affects mood and thinking.  

It can take up to 4 weeks of taking Fluoxetine regularly before patients start to feel the benefit.

fluoxetine alcohol

How do I take Fluoxetine?

Usually you should expect to start on a low dose and gradually increase if needed depending on how your symptoms are responding. The dose is usually taken once a day. 

Side effects of Fluoxetine

Common side effects include nausea, headaches, sleeping difficulties. They are usually worse in the first couple of weeks of starting the medication and tend to subside. 

Sometimes Fluoxetine may lead to worsening thoughts of suicide at the beginning of treatment. If you have suicidal thoughts you should contact your doctor or go to hospital straight away. 

fluoxetine side effects

Things to avoid

If you have certain other conditions you will need to let your doctor know before you start fluoxetine. These include: epilepsy, mania or hypomania, heart problems, kidney problems or liver problems, glaucoma, diabetes or a blood disorder that stops your blood from clotting normally. 

Fluoxetine and alcohol

Avoid drinking alcohol with this medication.

fluoxetine when pregnant

Can I take Fluoxetine when pregnant?

Taking Fluoxetine may be associated with risks in pregnancy. For these reasons it is very important that if you are pregnant or planning to have a baby you should speak to your doctor before starting Fluoxetine. There may be other more suitable medications available for you. 

It is always important to remember that stable mental health in mothers-to-be is very important which is why it is always best to speak to a doctor as soon as possible rather than just suddenly stop taking the Fluoxetine tablets. For some pregnant women the benefits they get from taking the Fluoxetine may outweigh the risks. 

Fluoxetine and breastfeeding

It is not recommended to breast feed while taking Fluoxetine.

fluoxetine when breastfeeding

Our doctors are available now and can issue same day prescriptions for all standard medications. To see a GP regarding a prescription for fluoxetine or for any other reason book an appointment now and start feeling better right away.

See a doctor about fluoxetine now

Please note. This site is for information only. If you are taking any medications please follow the instructions given by your doctor. Should you have an adverse reaction to any medication please seek medical advice.

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