Antidepressants increased the risk of stroke in older patients


The use of antidepressants with strong and moderate levels of serotonin reuptake inhibition has been associated with an increased risk of ischemic stroke in older adults. The likelihood of illness increased with the use of high doses of antidepressants, even if they were prescribed for a short period of time.

Scientists from Chung-Ang University in Korea found that taking antidepressants with strong and moderate serotonin reuptake inhibition increases the likelihood of developing ischemic stroke. The study results were published in The American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry.

Taking antidepressants with strong serotonin reuptake inhibition increases the risk of stroke by 1.19 times, and intermediate-level inhibitors by 1.06 times compared with weak inhibitors. The likelihood of developing the disease increased if drugs were prescribed in high dosages for a short period of time.

When strong serotonin reuptake inhibitors were combined with anticonvulsants, the risk of stroke increased by 1.75 times, and when intermediate-acting inhibitors were used in combination with proton pump inhibitors, the risk of stroke increased by 1.39 times.




Scientists compared the risk of stroke among 223 thousand elderly patients who received various serotonin reuptake inhibitors. 97 thousand people took drugs with a weak level of serotonin reuptake inhibition. Antidepressants with moderate and severe serotonin reuptake inhibition were received by 18.7 thousand and 107 thousand people, respectively.

The average age of the participants was 63.7 years. The most common medical history was hypertension and hyperlipidemia. More than 80% of patients received non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs within a year before the start of the study. The comparison group was people who took drugs with a weak ability to inhibit serotonin reuptake. The authors took into account the dose of drugs and the duration of their use.



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