ZocdocAnswersIs it safe to take zoloft and paxil together?

Question

Is it safe to take zoloft and paxil together?

I take zoloft now and I feel its not working as it once was.

Answer

Zoloft and Paxil are both medications that inhibit the reuptake of serotonin. We call them selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or SSRIs for short. These medications go into the brain and inhibit the reuptake of serotonin which causes the serotonin to spend more time in between the neurons and it increases its activity. There are some slight differences between Zoloft and Paxil and how they work, but essentially they both work on serotonin. If you were to take them together, then you would be getting potentially too high a dose of SSRI. We know that SSRIs can cause something called serotonin syndrome. Serotonin syndrome is a potentially fatal syndrome that include symptoms of fever, hypotension or low blood pressure, and confusion. Because this syndrome is possible, we never prescribed two SSRIs together. I would suggest that you schedule an appointment your primary care physician. The two of you can discuss your medication list and what other medications are safe to take alongside the ones you are currently taking. In addition, you can have a conversation about why the Zoloft is not working as it once was because perhaps you should be switched over to a different medication altogether. There are many other medications in this class that can work just as well and may work better in you, so please speak with your doctor.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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