More Info on Sarafem's Indications

How Sarafem Works

Sarafem is part of a class of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs for short. SSRIs, such as Sarafem, affect a specific chemical within the brain known as serotonin. Serotonin is one of several chemicals used to send messages from one nerve cell to another.
 
As a message travels down a nerve, it causes the end of the cell to release serotonin. The serotonin enters the gap between the first nerve cell and the one next to it. When enough serotonin reaches the second nerve cell, it activates receptors on the cell and the message continues on its way. The first cell then quickly absorbs any serotonin that remains in the gap between the cells. This is called "reuptake."
 
Normally, this process works without any problems. However, when the levels of serotonin become unbalanced, it can cause a variety of conditions, including PMDD. Sarafem helps to block the reuptake of serotonin so more serotonin remains in the space between the brain's nerve cells. This gives the serotonin a better chance of activating the receptors on the next nerve cell.
 

Sarafem for Use in Children and Teens

Sarafem is not approved for children or teens under the age of 18. Talk to your healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of using Sarafem in children or teens.
 

Off-Label Sarafem Uses

On occasion, your healthcare provider may recommend a medication for something other than the conditions it is approved to treat. This is called an "off-label" use. At this time, there are no universally accepted off-label uses for Sarafem. However, Prozac (which contains the same active ingredient as Sarafem) is approved for several other uses.
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