Tagged Articles

Lexapro 101 articles

New drug reaction warnings placed on SSRI and SNRI antidepressants

Patients who use some types of antidepressants with other serotonergic drugs are at an increased risk for developing a potentially life threatening drug reaction known as serotonin syndrome. The drug labels for several antidepressants in the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) and serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) classes now contain a new warning that the drugs should not be used with other serotonergic drugs (including Triptans, Tricyclic antidepressants, Fentanyl, Lithium, Tramadol, Tryptonphan, Buspirone, and St. John’s Wort) and with drugs that impair metabolism of serotonin (in particular, MAOIs, both those intended to treat psychiatric disorders and also others, such as Linezolid and ... Read More

SSRIs increase risk of birth defects but not stillbirth or infant death

Taking antidepressants during pregnancy does not increase the chances that the baby will die in utero or shortly after birth, a new study suggests. However, using the medication while pregnant does increase the likelihood that babies will be born with birth defects. The study is based on a class of antidepressants known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, which include the brand-name drugs Zoloft, Paxil, Lexapro and Prozac. Researchers studied 1.6 million women who delivered singletons in Nordic countries from 1996 to 2007. Before accounting for risks that can potentially lead to stillbirth or infant death, researchers noticed a ... Read More

Canadian judge certifies class action lawsuit against Paxil

It was devastating for Faith Gibson of British Columbia to learn that her daughter Meah Bartram was born with a hole in her heart. But it was even more crushing for Gibson to learn two weeks later that her daughter’s birth defect could have been prevented. Two weeks after she delivered Meah, drug maker GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) warned doctors that taking the antidepressant Paxil during pregnancy could increase the risk of cardiovascular defects. Faith used Paxil during her pregnancy and based on information available to her at the time, she believed the drug to be safe for her unborn child. When ... Read More

50th anniversary for Kefauver-Harris Amendment to ensure safer, more effective drugs

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Kefauver-Harris Amendment, action that required drug companies provide more thorough data on the safety and efficacy of prescription drugs before they are approved. The amendment led to the development of evidence-based drug evaluations carried out by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Despite these efforts, some drug companies still try to withhold information on adverse drug reactions in order to bolster their own profits. Much of the credit for the passage of the Kefauver-Harris Amendment goes to Frances O’Kelsey. More than 50 years ago, when O’Kelsey was first hired to serve as ... Read More

Lexapro may be effective in treating symptoms of menopause

The antidepressant escitalopram, known by the brand name Lexapro, was effective in decreasing hot flash frequency and severity in menopausal women, according to a small clinical trial. Lexapro is in a class of medications known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). It is approved to treat depression and generalized anxiety disorder, and excessive worry and tension that lasts for 6 months or longer. Other brand-name antidepressants in the SSRI class include Paxil, Zoloft, Celexa, and Prozac. The study was conduced in 2009 and has not resulted in the drug’s maker seeking approval for the new indication. However, some doctors prescribe ... Read More

SSRIs may inhibit pregnancy in women undergoing fertility treatments

Researchers are urging doctors to use extreme caution when prescribing a common class of antidepressants called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) to women who are attempting to become pregnant or during pregnancy. SSRIs – which include the brand names Zoloft, Paxil, Prozac, Lexapro and Celexa – may inhibit pregnancy in women undergoing fertility treatments, cause miscarriages and preterm births, and put developing fetuses at risk of birth defects. The information comes from a review of published studies of women with depressive symptoms who took antidepressants while pregnant. The review was published in the journal Human Reproduction. Researchers noted that as ... Read More

SSRIs increase risk of major bleeding events in patients on warfarin

Antidepressants known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) have been linked to an increased risk of major bleeding in patients who are also taking the blood thinner warfarin. Warfarin is widely prescribed to treat various conditions including the prevention and treatment of blood clots. The blood thinner has been on the market more than 50 years and already carries a warning for major bleeding, such as gastrointestinal bleeds and intracranial hemorrhage, both of which can be deadly. The new findings were announced earlier this month at the American Heart Association annual meeting in Los Angeles. SSRIs include the brand names Celexa, ... Read More

Systematic review of studies finds numerous problems with SSRI use during pregnancy

Women who took antidepressants while pregnant were more likely to miscarry, deliver prematurely, and to give birth to babies with developmental and health problems, according to a new systematic review of studies. The review focused on selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), the most commonly prescribed antidepressants in the United States. Brand names include Paxil, Zoloft, Celexa, Lexapro and Prozac. Researchers from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Waltham, Mass., noted that women who took SSRIs while pregnant were more likely to deliver their babies preterm. They were also more likely to develop high blood pressure that can lead to pre-eclampsia, ... Read More

Studies reveal risks, help women make informed decisions about taking SSRIs during pregnancy

Janice Price, 37, is waiting for answers. The 37-year-old woman has wanted to start a family with her husband for at least two years. But she is taking an antidepressant and worries about studies that have linked antidepressant use during pregnancy to problems for both the expectant mother and her unborn child. Recent studies have shown that pregnant women who take a common type of antidepressant known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) have an increased risk of developing high blood pressure that can lead to pre-eclampsia, a condition that can be life threatening to both mother and the fetus. ... Read More

SSRIs may increase stroke risk

Taking the most common type of antidepressant can increase the risk of certain types of strokes, according to a study published in the journal Neurology. The new research builds on previous studies that linked use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) to major bleeding, such as gastrointestinal bleeding. SSRIs include brand name drugs Zoloft, Paxil, Lexapro and Prozac. SSRIs are thought to inhibit the clumping together of platelets, which could cause internal bleeding. The new study focused on antidepressant use and stroke. Canadian researchers analyzed 16 studies and found that of the combined 500,000 participants, those taking SSRIs were 51 ... Read More