Home from the doctor’s with a month’s supply of Fluoxetine 20mg, to be taken once daily until the doctor advises otherwise. First attempt short-term medicine to fill the wait until counselling.


Type of medicine: Selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant

Used for: Depression, Bulimia nervosa, Obsessive-compulsive disorder

Also called: Oxactin®, Ranflutin®, Prozep®, Prozac®, Prozit®

Check with your doctor if any of the following side effects occur: Marked behavioural changes including excessive excitement, abnormal body movements, combination of unresponsive body rigidity (inability to move or talk) high fever, profuse sweating or difficulty in breathing.

The following side effects have been most commonly reported. These side effects may go away on their own, however, check with your doctor if they continue or are bothersome: Anxiety, and nervousness, drowsiness; insomnia; dizziness; weakness or fatigue; nausea; diarrhoea; dry mouth; weight loss; tremor and increased sweating.

Some side effects which have been reported but are uncommon are as follows: headache, dry mouth, loss of appetite, dyspepsia, vomiting, severe constipation, increase of blood pressure and/or sight impairment, sore throat, joint or muscle pain, hair loss (usually reversible), sexual dysfunction and liver problems. Also problems with sense of taste have been reported.

In addition, some other side effects have been reported in association with fluoxetine but definite relationship with the medicine has not been established: Confusion; suicidal tendency; violent behaviour; stroke; increased tendency to bleed from various body sites such as gums, nose; blue-black patches over the skin occur following a bruise; fatigue or weakness with recurrent infections; dry cough associated with fever; chills and difficulty in breathing; sudden onset of abdominal pain; nausea and vomiting; passage of bloody or black stools and/or vomiting of blood or material that looks like coffee grounds; excessive milk flow from breasts; vaginal bleeding (after drug withdrawal) and anaemia.

Inform your doctor as soon as possible in case any of the above problems occur.

Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients.


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