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Sometimes, The Treatment Is Worse Than The Disease

You go to doctors to find relief from physical and mental ailments. In many cases, a medication can provide you with the relief you need in order to move forward with your life. Just about every medication has side effects, but doctors often weigh the risk against the benefit you receive.

The problem is that it’s not the doctor’s life that could be at stake. You have the right to make your own choices about the medicines you take and to know what risks you assume if you take them. One medication that has a significant number of side effects is Zoloft.

Reasons for prescribing Zoloft

If your doctor prescribed Zoloft, it was more than likely for one of the following conditions:

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Depression
  • Panic disorder
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Social anxiety disorder
  • Premenstrual dysphoric disorder

This medication is just one among many that the Food and Drug Administration issued warnings about in 2004, 2005 and 2006.

The 2004 FDA warning

In that year, the FDA required makers of antidepressant medications to put warnings on their products. The warning was the increased potential for teenagers and children to commit suicide by taking the medication. The makers of Zoloft have since added a “black box” warning to the prescription information.

The 2005 FDA warning

Continuing research revealed that it was not just teens and children at risk of increased suicidal thoughts and behaviors from taking Zoloft or other antidepressants. The FDA added adults to the risk group as well in 2005. This time, however, the FDA went further and recommended that doctors closely monitor patients prescribed these medications for behavioral changes especially if the patient takes the drug for depression.

The 2006 FDA warning

The threat of serotonin syndrome could occur when combining Zoloft (a Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor) and migraine medicines called triptans. This condition could threaten your life and comes with the following symptoms and signs:

  • Vomiting
  • Restlessness
  • Nausea
  • Hallucinations
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of coordination
  • Overactive reflexes
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Fast blood pressure changes
  • Increased body temperature

In that same 2006 warning, the FDA cautioned pregnant women regarding taking Zoloft. It could cause serious health issues for the mother and child.

Zoloft side effects

In addition to the warnings issued by the FDA, Zoloft has its own set of serious and potentially deadly side effects:

  • Bleeding problems
  • Seizures
  • Mania
  • Weight loss
  • Sexual problems

If you experience any of these problems, you may need to seek medical attention.

Legal help

Dangerous medications like Zoloft have been the subject of litigation for quite some time, but the medications remain on the market. If you suffered serious injuries or lost a loved one due to one of these drugs, you may have the right to pursue compensation. Pharmaceutical companies owe a duty to manufacture and distribute safe products, and when they don’t, victims may attempt to hold them legally accountable for the damage done to them and their families.