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Sertraline, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), treats disorders such as depression, panic disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and premenstrual dysphoric disorder. Using sertraline for premature ejaculation is an off-label use for this medication, but it can be effective. The side effects of SSRIs include sexual dysfunction and anejaculation. The mechanism behind these side effects lessens the incidence of premature ejaculation.
Premature ejaculation is defined as an orgasm and ejaculation occurring before the person desires. This typically occurs either before or soon after penetration and often results in an unsatisfactory experience for both people. Treatments for premature ejaculation include relaxation techniques, distraction methods and medication. Sertraline for premature ejaculation works by the natural side effect of delayed ejaculation. Before a treatment for premature ejaculation commences, the doctor performs tests on the patient to determine possible underlying health causes such as hormone imbalance, injury or side effects of medication.
Mental disorders such as depression and OCD are caused by an imbalance of hormones in the brain. Sertraline increases the levels of serotonin in the brain, leveling off this imbalance to alleviate depressive symptoms. The natural side effects of sertraline include anejaculation. This side effect is what works to alleviate symptoms of premature ejaculation.
Studies show that dosages of 25-100 milligrams of sertraline for premature ejaculation work to alleviate the symptoms. Initial dosages for sertraline start at 50 milligrams per day. An increase in dosage of 50-milligram increments is allowable after a week. The dosage of sertraline for premature ejaculation tops out at 200 milligrams once per day. The side effects of sertraline increase with the increase in dosage.
The common side effects of sertraline include weight changes, diarrhea, increased sweating, unusual drowsiness and trouble sleeping. The most common side effects in men include decreased sexual ability or desire. Some men report an inability to discharge semen. Serious side effects such as chest pains, hostility, suicidal thoughts, tremors and painful erections need to be immediately reported to a medical professional. A list of the common and serious side effects typically is provided with the medication.
Sertraline, which in some locations is available only by prescription, reacts negatively with certain medications, including tryptophan, St. John's Wort, rizatriptan and smatriptan. Using sertraline for premature ejaculation can cause agitation, irritability and subnormal behaviors. It also can cause sleepiness, so someone who is taking should not operate machinery or drive until the side effects are known. Alcohol should not be consumed by someone who is taking sertraline, because alcohol can aggravate the natural side effects of sertraline, causing a sedative effect.