Sarafem (generic name Fluoxetine) is the medication indicated for the treatment of depressive disorders and severe PMDD (premenstrual dysphoric disorder) in women. It works improving sleep, mood, appetite and the level of energy, decreasing the symptoms of panic attacks, unusual thoughts, anxiety and fear, as well as such premenstrual symptoms as depression and irritation.
How It Should Be Used
Sarafem comes in three dosages which include 10 mg, 15 mg and 20 mg. The recommended dose needed for treatment of PMDD is 20 mg daily taken continuously (during the menstrual cycle) or for the period of 14 days before the onset of menstruation up till the first day of the following menstrual cycle. The dose should be prescribed by your healthcare provider and be based on individual characteristics of the patient and her health condition.
Take Sarafem with or without food according to the dosing schedule set by your doctor. If you have missed a dose, take it once you have remembered about it or skip it and wait for the next one.
Pregnant women aren’t usually treated against PMDD, as this symptoms just doesn’t exist in pregnant women. However, if such a need arises, a healthcare provider carefully evaluates all the risks and benefits for a mother-to-be.
Before treatment course with Sarafem make sure you have informed your doctor about the following conditions, if any:
Allergy to any of the ingredients of the drug;
Allergy to other medications, substances and foods;
Intake of pimozide, Linezolid, thioridazine, methylene blue, medications for depression, such as phenelzine, tranylcypromine, or drugs for Parkinson’s disease, etc.
High blood sugar;
Intake of medication in the third trimester of pregnancy.
Just like other medications, Sarafem may trigger the appearance of adverse reactions, with the most common ones being the following:
Fatigue or weakness;
If they bother you or don’t go away at all, it’s advisable to consult your doctor and get dose adjustment. There are also rare and severe complications which may happen during the drug intake. Seek emergency medical assistance in case you have noticed any of the following:
Signs of allergic reactions, such as rash, swollen, peeling and red skin, fever, tightness in the throat or chest, trouble swallowing or breathing, swelling of the lips, face, mouth or throat;
Unreasonable weight gain or loss;
Signs of bleeding, such as coughing up blood, tarry, black or red stools, abnormal vaginal bleeding, bruises or any other bleeding that doesn’t stop;
Shivering and excess sweating;
This is not a full list of side effects that may appear as a result of Sarafem administration. Contact your doctor for information.