What is Zoloft?
Sertraline hydrochloride, marketed as Zoloft, is an antidepressant used to treat major depression as well as obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, and panic and social anxiety issues. Zoloft, which was introduced into the market by Pfizer in 1991, is classified as a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant. SSRI medications are widely prescribed and are used more than any other drug to treat depression in the U.S. Other SSRI medications include Celexa and Lexapro, among others.
The Food and Drug Administration initially placed SSRI antidepressants including Zoloft in its pregnancy “Category C” class of medications. This pregnancy category means that animal reproduction studies have shown an adverse effect on the fetus and there are no adequate well-controlled studies in humans. The Pregnancy categories measure the teratogenic effects a drug has on a fetus. Teratogenic means that a drug or other substance is capable of interfering with the development of a fetus.