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SSRI is an acronym for Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor. SSRIs are antidepressants [1] that work by inhibiting serotonin (a.k.a. 5-hydroxytryptamine or 5-HT) re-uptake. Unlike tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) and serotonin/norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), SSRIs have greater selectivity for the serotonin transporter than to norepinephrine transporter [2]. Therefore, SSRIs are more specific, inhibiting only serotonin reuptake [2]. This in turn will increase the serotonin level across the synaptic cleft.

Some examples of SSRIs include fluoxetine (also known by the trade name Prozac), paroxetine and sertraline [1].

SSRIs can have a variety of side effects on a patient, including drowsiness, nausea, insomnia, dry mouth and agitation.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Rang, H.P., Dale, M.M., Ritter, J.M., Flower, R.J. and Henderson, G., 2011. Rang and Dale's Pharmacology 7th ed. London:Elsevier Inc.
  2. 2.0 2.1 WHALEN, K., FINKEL, R. and PANAVELIL, T.A., (2015) Lippincott Illustrated Reviews: Pharmacology. 6th Ed. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer.
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