Zoloft is very effective for panic disorder. Zoloft, generic name sertraline, is an antidepressant medication in the SSRI class (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor). Of all the SSRIs, Zoloft has relatively fewer side effects and is generally well tolerated. It is also quite effective for panic disorder.
In reality, all of the SSRIs are effective for panic disorder, but Zoloft is one of the best tolerated. Prozac (fluoxetine) is the least tolerated of the SSRIs, as it can cause activation (jitteriness, restlessness) and more anxiety symptoms when first starting it. Paxil (paroxetine) suffers from having a short half-life, so it has to be dosed at least twice daily to get steady blood levels of the drug throughout the day. And when you miss doses of Paxil, you may get withdrawal effects that feel like having the flu. Celexa (citalopram) appears to be better tolerated than Prozac and Paxil. Lexapro (escitalopram) also appears to be well-tolerated, but it is not available in generic, so it is expensive and may not be covered by your insurance.
So I tend to prescribe Zoloft or Celexa for panic disorder, as both of these medications are effective for panic disorder, and they are well tolerated. Zoloft and Celexa also comes in generic forms, sertraline and citalopram, respectively. When prescription drugs go off patent, then generics can be manufactured, so this reduces the cost of the drug considerably. So this is an additional benefit of Zoloft and Celexa for panic disorder.
Finally, dosing Zoloft and Celexa are relatively easy for panic disorder. Zoloft dosing starts at 25mg, increasing the dose 25mg to 50mg every 2 to 4 weeks until clinical effect- maximum dose 200mg daily. Celexa dosing starts at 10mg, increasing the dose 10mg every 2 to 4 weeks until clinical effect- maximum dose 40mg daily.