Compare Prozac vs. Buspar

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Prozac
(fluoxetine)

Buspar
(buspirone)

Improves mood and helps you relax. Prozac (Fluoxetine) is good for treating depression and anxiety. It's more energizing than other antidepressants, but may not be the best choice for people who have trouble sleeping.Helps you relax. Buspar (Buspirone) is effective for treating Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), and less effective for short-term use.
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Prices and coupon for 30 (20mg) capsules of fluoxetine
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Prices and coupon for 60 (10mg) tablets of buspirone
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.74Prozac
Reviews for Prozac (fluoxetine)
62%
of people (All ages) say Prozac (fluoxetine) is worth it
40%
say it works well
16%
say it's a big hassle
1319 reviews
Have you used Prozac (fluoxetine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Buspar (buspirone)
46%
-16% worse vs. Prozac (fluoxetine)
45%
+5% better vs. Prozac (fluoxetine)
22%
-6% worse vs. Prozac (fluoxetine)
Have you used Buspar (buspirone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
ProzacBuspar
  • Nausea 13%
  • Headache 2%
  • Sleep difficulty 18%
  • Nervousness 5%
  • Drowsiness 7%
  • Anxiety 6%
  • Diarrhea 4%
  • Muscle weakness 5%
  • Loss of appetite 7%
  • Dizziness 3%
More Prozac side effects »
  • Dizziness 9%
  • Any side effect 10%
  • Drowsiness 1%
  • Nausea 3%
  • Headache 3%
  • Nervousness 4%
  • Central nervous system disturbances 3%
More Buspar side effects »
How it works
ProzacBuspar
Prozac (Fluoxetine) is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant. It increases serotonin activity in the brain, which regulates mood.Buspar (Buspirone) is an anti-anxiety medication. It's used to stabilize chemicals in the brain that control mood and nervousness.
Type of medication
ProzacBuspar
Prescription only
Prescription only
Available as
ProzacBuspar
  • Pill
  • Delayed release capsule
  • Liquid
  • Pill
Used for
ProzacBuspar
Risk factors for serious side effects
ProzacBuspar
  • Age 24 years or younger
  • Using other medications that affect serotonin
  • Stopping Prozac (Fluoxetine) suddenly
  • History of heart problems
  • History of liver problems
  • Drug interactions
  • Taking other blood-thinning drugs
    • History of bipolar disorder
    • At risk for bipolar disorder
    Detailed Prozac (fluoxetine) risks & warnings »
    • Taking with MAOIs
    • Taking with Zyvox or methylene blue
    • Taking with or converting from benzodiazepine medicines
    • Duration of treatment
    Detailed Buspar (buspirone) risks & warnings »
    Pregnancy

    Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

    Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.

    Alcohol
    ProzacBuspar
    No alcohol related info.
    • Avoid alcohol when taking Buspar (Buspirone).
    Food
    ProzacBuspar
    • Take in the morning with food to avoid side effects.
    • Be consistent in taking Buspar (Buspirone) with or without food.
    Sex
    ProzacBuspar
    • Can cause sexual side effects like low libido and an inability to orgasm or ejaculate.
    No sex related info.
    Sleep
    ProzacBuspar
    No sleep related info.
    • Can cause drowsiness or dizziness when you start taking Buspar (Buspirone). Be extremely careful of activities that require mental alertness, such as driving.
    Upsides and benefits
    ProzacBuspar
    • Effective at relieving depression and anxiety symptoms.
    • Lowers relapse rates of depression and bulimia nervosa.
    • Causes less sleepiness than other antidepressants.
    • It's more energizing than other antidepressants, so it's good for people who have low energy.
    • It has been used to treat depression for a long time, so there's a lot of information available about how it works and how safe it is.
    • Six out of ten people who use an antidepressant for the first time find that it works for them.
    • Buspar (Buspirone) works very well to control the symptoms of generalized anxiety syndrome (GAD).
    • Buspar (Buspirone) doesn't cause physical dependence or withdrawal symptoms.
    • Buspar (Buspirone) is only available as a generic, so the price can be pretty cheap.
    Downsides and risks
    ProzacBuspar
    • Can cause sexual side effects like low libido and an inability to orgasm or ejaculate.
    • Can increase feelings of anxiety or cause headaches during the first few weeks of taking it. These effects should go away over time.
    • More likely than other antidepressants to interact with other medications you're taking.
    • Like most antidepressants, it can cause a higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior for people younger than 24.
    • The first antidepressant you try doesn't always work or it can cause side effects you really don't like. You might need to try a few different medications until you find one that works for you.
    • Buspar (Buspirone) can take as long as four weeks to become fully effective.
    • Not as effective for short-term anxiety conditions or panic disorders.
    • Most people find that it loses effectiveness over long periods of time.
    • Can cause drowsiness or dizziness when you start taking Buspar (Buspirone). Be extremely careful of activities that require mental alertness, such as driving.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    ProzacBuspar
    • Take in the morning with food to avoid side effects.
    • Takes about 8 to 12 weeks to see the medication's full effects on your mood.
    • Stop taking it slowly to avoid getting withdrawal symptoms.
    • Tell your doctor if you notice sudden mood changes or unusual thoughts.
    • Take doses at about the same time each day.
    • It can take several weeks to get the full effect.
    • Don't eat or drink grapefruit juice when using Buspar (Buspirone).
    • Don't use Buspar (Buspirone) within two weeks of using an MAO inhibitor (like Eldepryl, Parnate, or Marplan).
    • Be consistent in taking Buspar (Buspirone) with or without food.
    • Avoid alcohol when taking Buspar (Buspirone).
    Learn more
    More about ProzacSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    Have you used Prozac (fluoxetine)?
    Worth itNot sureNot worth it
    More about BusparSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    Have you used Buspar (buspirone)?
    Worth itNot sureNot worth it