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Is Prozac a controlled substance / addictive?

Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on Dec 8, 2022.

Official answer


No, Prozac (fluoxetine) is not classified as a controlled substance by the DEA and does not have physically addictive or abuse properties like an opioid or benzodiazepine. However, as with many medicines, some patients may feel psychologically dependent or experience withdrawal symptoms upon discontinuation.

Prozac is classified as an oral selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant and requires a prescription from your healthcare provider.

It is commonly used to treat depression, anxiety and panic disorders, binge eating disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD).
It is also used in combination with the atypical antipsychotic agent olanzapine for treatment-resistant depression or manic depression caused by bipolar disorder.

Prozac, made by Eli Lilly, is available as a brand name oral capsule. Generic fluoxetine options are also available for the oral capsule, oral solution, oral tablet, and delayed-release (weekly) oral capsule. It also comes combined with olanzapine (Symbyax or generics) in one capsule.

What do Prozac withdrawals feel like?

Withdrawal symptoms with Prozac can include:

  • anxiety
  • irritability
  • mood changes
  • restlessness
  • trouble sleeping
  • headache
  • increased sweating
  • nausea
  • dizziness
  • electric shock-like sensations
  • shaking
  • confusion

Withdrawal symptoms may occur if Prozac treatment is stopped abruptly, although this is less likely than with some other SSRIs, as it is slowly eliminated from the body. Prozac, especially when using lower doses, may cause fewer incidences of withdrawal symptoms due to the long half-life of the parent drug and its major active metabolite (about 7 days).

Because Prozac takes a longer time to be fully eliminated from your body, it may take longer for any side effects to subside.

Contact your healthcare provider for instructions on slowly tapering your treatment to help lower the risk for withdrawal symptoms.

This is not all the information you need to know about Prozac (fluoxetine) for safe and effective use and does not take the place of your doctor’s directions. Review the full product information and discuss this information and any questions you have with your doctor or other health care provider.

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