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antidepressants 102 articles

Fall risk, fractures more likely among elderly patients using antidepressants

Elderly patients treated with antidepressants to treat symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease have nearly double the risk of having a hip fracture, and the risk remains high even four years after the initiation of therapy, according to a new study from the University of Eastern Finland. Hip fractures are a serious injury that can be life threatening. They are even more dangerous – and prevalent – in the elderly. Multiple medications, poor vision and balance problems make older individuals more apt to trip and fall. And falls more often lead to fractures, particularly in the hip, of the elderly because their bones tend to weaken ... Read More

FDA evaluating link between antidepressants and ‘broken heart syndrome’

Antidepressants may break your heart … or at least that’s what the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) aims to find out. In its latest quarterly filing of Potential Signals of Serious Risks/New Safety Information identified through its adverse event database for April to June 2016, the FDA says it is reviewing cases of stress cardiomyopathy – known as the “broken heart syndrome” – to determine whether regulatory action – such as a new warning – is needed. Stress cardiomyopathy is also referred to as takotsubo cardiomyopathy and apical ballooning syndrome. It is a condition in which intense emotional or physical ... Read More

Large study links hormonal birth control to depression

Hormonal birth control, especially among adolescent girls, was associated with subsequent use of antidepressants and a first-diagnosis of depression, suggesting depression may be an adverse effect of hormonal contraception, according to a new study published in JAMA Psychiatry. Millions of women worldwide use hormonal contraception, available in pills, patches, implants, and intrauterine devices. The products have often been blamed for mood swings, though studies have not definitively established that link. Researchers with the University of Copenhagen in Denmark set out to investigate whether these types of contraceptives were linked to behavior changes, specifically depression leading to the use of antidepressants or a ... Read More

Painkillers, antidepressants associated with greater risk of committing homicide

Medications such as painkillers and antidepressants can increase a person’s risk of committing homicide and other violent behaviors by 200 percent, according to a new study. The study, conducted by European psychiatrists and published in the journal World Psychology, involved 960 homicide convicts in Finland. Each member was matched with 10 people of the same age and gender from the same town but who had not committed homicide. Researchers then reviewed a national drug registry to see who in the study had taken psychiatric drugs, painkillers, anti-seizure medications, and drugs to control addictions over the previous seven years. Then they ... Read More

Mental health groups ask FDA to remove black box warning for suicide risk from antidepressants

Mental health experts are petitioning the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to remove its severest warning involving suicidal thoughts from the safety labels on all antidepressants because the warning has resulted in a 33 percent increase in suicide attempts, and has scared away some patients who may benefit from the medication. In 2004, the FDA placed a black box warning, its most serious kind, on all categories of antidepressants, indicating that there is an increased suicide risk in children and adolescents treated with the drugs. Two years later, the FDA extended the warning to young adults to age 25 and recommended ... Read More

Experts worry about skyrocketing prescriptions for antidepressants

The number of prescriptions for antidepressants has reached a record high in the United Kingdom, and experts fear that some people may be unnecessarily exposed to antidepressant side effects. The Health and Social Care Information Centre released the new figures on prescription drugs, which showed antidepressant use had risen by one-third in just a year, and that about four million Britons are taking the drugs each year – twice as many compared to 10 years ago. Representatives from mental health agencies say they worry that people suffering from depression are prescribed drugs as a first-line defense because other forms of ... Read More

New meta-analysis raises serious questions about SSRI use during pregnancy

There is not enough research to provide a clear guidance on the risks or benefits of antidepressant use during pregnancy, however there are serious concerns regarding the drugs’ affects on newborns that should be addressed, a new meta-analysis has found. The analysis on antidepressant use during and after pregnancy was conducted by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The study focused on a class of antidepressants known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, which include the brand names Zoloft, Prozac, Lexapro, Celexa, and Paxil. Researchers reported finding evidence that SSRI use during ... Read More

Celexa, Lexapro birth defects lawsuits returned to state court

Fifteen lawsuits over birth defects in children born to women who took the antidepressants Celexa or Lexapro while pregnant were remanded to state court, a federal judge in Camden, N.J., ruled. Attorneys for the drugs’ maker Forest Laboratories unsuccessfully argued that federal jurisdiction was proper because there were questions about the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) labeling of the drugs. Defendants’ claims that Forest Research Institute was fraudulently joined as a defendant were rejected as well. The 15 lawsuits are among 20 that were filed in state courts in New Jersey and removed to federal court by the drug companies. ... Read More

New study suggests SSRI use during pregnancy increases risk of autism spectrum disorders in children

Women using antidepressants known as SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) during pregnancy may be at higher risk of having children with autism spectrum disorders, according to a new study published in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. Several studies have raised red flags with the use of SSRIs during pregnancy. SSRIs, which include the brand names Zoloft, Paxil, Lexapro, Celexa and Prozac, have been linked to birth defects such as persistent pulmonary hypertension, heart defects, neural tube defects and malformations. Studies have also suggested that children exposed to SSRIs in utero are more likely to have behavioral problems and ... Read More

Antidepressant use during pregnancy remains controversial issue

A new study suggesting that there is no increased risk of heart defects in newborns exposed to antidepressants in the first three months of gestation is being criticized by medical experts. “While this is an excellent group of researchers, there are some serious flaws with this study,” says Dr. Adam Urato, maternal-fetal medicine specialist at Tufts Medical Center in Boston. “This isn’t rocket science. We know that exposing developing babies to synthetic chemicals is almost always a really bad idea and should be avoided whenever possible. This study does nothing to alter that common sense concolusion.” The study, conducted by ... Read More