More Info on Sertraline's Indications

How Does Sertraline Work?

Sertraline is part of a class of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs for short. SSRIs, such as sertraline, act on 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 cells. This is called "reuptake."
 
Normally, this process works without any problems. But when the levels of serotonin become unbalanced, it can cause a variety of conditions such as depression and panic disorder. Sertraline 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.
 

Sertraline Uses in Children

Sertraline has been approved to treat children with obsessive-compulsive disorder. Sertraline has not been licensed to treat children with depression or other psychiatric conditions. Talk to your healthcare provider about the benefits and risks of using sertraline in children.
 

Off-Label Sertraline Uses

On occasion, your healthcare provider may recommend sertraline for something other than the conditions listed above. This is called an "off-label" use. At this time, there are several off-label sertraline uses, including the treatment of:
 
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Sertraline Hydrochloride

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