Medically reviewed by Katelyn Hagerty, FNP
Written by Our Editorial Team
Last updated 6/18/2021
Premature ejaculation, or PE, is a common form of sexual dysfunction in which you ejaculate in relatively little time during penetrative sex.
Research shows that PE is quite common for men. According to a review article published in the International Journal of Impotence Research, approximately 30 percent of all men worldwide are affected by some degree of PE.
If you’ve searched for information on treatments for PE, you may have seen the antidepressant medication Prozac® mentioned as an option.
Below, we’ve explained what Prozac is, as well as how it may be able to help you if you’re prone to premature ejaculation.
We’ve also listed other science-based treatments that you may want to try to increase your time to ejaculation and improve your sexual performance.
Prozac is an antidepressant. It contains the active ingredient fluoxetine and belongs to a class of medications called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs.
Currently, Prozac is approved by the FDA as a treatment for major depressive disorder, panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and bulimia nervosa.
SSRIs such as Prozac work by increasing the amount of serotonin in your brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that’s responsible for a range of functions, including regulating your mood and managing feelings such as happiness and anxiety.
Although Prozac was never designed as a medication for treating premature ejaculation, some research has shown that it’s effective at slowing down the orgasm and ejaculation process.
For example, in a study published in the Journal of Urology in 1996, researchers compared the effects of fluoxetine (the active ingredient in Prozac) and a non-therapeutic placebo in men with premature ejaculation.
They found that the men who used fluoxetine had a significantly longer intravaginal ejaculation latency period (the amount of time required to ejaculate during sex) than the men who used the non-therapeutic placebo.
While this study’s findings are interesting, they’re limited by its small size — in total, only 17 men took part.
Other studies have typically produced similar findings. For example, a larger, more recent study published in the journal Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management compared fluoxetine to two other medications — the SSRIs escitalopram and paroxetine.
In this study, 100 men with PE were divided into groups, with each group undergoing treatment with one of the three medications.
After four weeks, all 100 of the men that took part in the study showed improvements in their ejaculation latency (time to ejaculation).
Another study published in the International Brazilian Journal of Urology in 2019 involved testing several SSRIs to see which was the most effective at treating PE.
The researchers compared fluoxetine, sertraline, paroxetine and citalopram and concluded that all of the medications were effective at treating premature ejaculation with relatively few serious complications.
In this study, men with PE who used fluoxetine increased their average intravaginal ejaculatory latency time from 75.5±64.3 to 314.8±190.4 seconds (approximately five ± three minutes) over the course of eight weeks.
Put simply, scientific research shows that fluoxetine, the active ingredient in Prozac, is effective as a treatment for PE.
Experts believe that Prozac’s effectiveness as a treatment for premature ejaculation is related to the link between serotonin levels and ejaculation.
Some scientific research suggests that serotonin, throughout descending tracts that connect the brain with the rest of the body, has an inhibiting effect on orgasm and ejaculation.
Perhaps as a result of this effect, Prozac and several other SSRIs often list delayed or abnormal ejaculation as a potential side effect.
Although Prozac isn’t officially approved by the FDA as a treatment for premature ejaculation, it may be prescribed off-label for this purpose.
If you’re prescribed Prozac or generic fluoxetine by your healthcare provider to treat premature ejaculation, it’s important to use it exactly as prescribed.
Because Prozac isn’t approved by the FDA for premature ejaculation, there’s no official dosage for this purpose. However, a common fluoxetine dosage for treating PE is 20mg per day.
Prozac and generic fluoxetine are safe and effective PE treatments for most men. However, like other SSRIs, they can potentially cause side effects.
Potential side effects of Prozac include:
Asthenia (physical weakness or lack of energy)
Impotence (erectile dysfunction)
Insomnia (difficulty falling or staying asleep)
Pharyngitis (sore throat)
Somnolence (drowsiness or sleepiness)
Although uncommon, Prozac and other SSRIs may cause more serious side effects, including side effects that affect your behavior and/or mental state.
Our guide to Prozac side effects lists these issues and provides more information on how you should respond to them.
In addition to Prozac and generic fluoxetine, several other medications are available to delay orgasm and treat premature ejaculation. These include:
Premature ejaculation sprays. These treatments, such as our Delay Spray, work by reducing the sensitivity level of your penis, helping you to have sex for longer before you reach orgasm and ejaculate.
Other SSRIs. Several SSRIs, such as sertraline, paroxetine, escitalopram and others, are also used off-label to treat premature ejaculation. We offer sertraline for premature ejaculation online, following a consultation with a licensed healthcare provider.
ED medications. Some erectile dysfunction, such as sildenafil (the active ingredient in Viagra®), seem to have a small positive impact on ejaculation time. These medications may be helpful for increasing sexual confidence in men with premature ejaculation.
In addition to medication, a range of therapeutic techniques and lifestyle changes may help to improve sexual performance and treat premature ejaculation. These include:
Behavioral therapy. Research shows that behavioral therapy techniques can prolong sex and help men with PE. We’ve talked about these in more detail in our full guide to stopping premature ejaculation.
Counseling. If your premature ejaculation is related to a psychological issue, such as sexual performance anxiety or guilt about sex, counseling may help. Research shows that a mix of psychotherapy and medication are often effective at treating PE.
Lifestyle changes. Simple lifestyle changes, such as exercising regularly and focusing on your mental health, may improve your sexual performance and help you to have sex for longer before ejaculating.
Several studies show that Prozac and other SSRIs can delay orgasm and increase ejaculation latency for men with PE.
Although Prozac isn’t approved by the FDA as a treatment for premature ejacualtion, it may be prescribed off-label for this purpose.
Other options for treating premature ejaculation include sertraline and our Delay Spray for Men, which is formulated with lidocaine to reduce sensitivity without being overly numbing.