Age and depression meds

Antidepressants “strongly linked” to risk of suicide in young adults


 

In a study just published by the British Medical Journal, researchers identify a “strong link” between antidepressants and suicidal risk among young adults aged 25 or less. This builds on data by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration from a couple of years ago. It also broadens the group of at-risk patients beyond children and teenagers, who have exhibited increased chance of suicidal thoughts and behaviour in previous studies of antidepressants. In this latest one, researchers analyzed the data on suicide risk in adults from randomized trials of antidepressants, which was obtained from eight manufacturers. They found that among people aged 25 to 64 there was no increased risk of “suicidality”; in fact, among patients 65 or older the risk was reduced. But among adults aged 24 or younger, there was an increase. The researchers say that in the future, more studies should be done on why this occurs only in some people. The FDA has also augmented its suicide warning on antidepressants, including this age-related information. Still, a BMJ editorial says there is still “fundamental uncertainty” about the details of antidepressants increasing the risk of suicide depending on which drug is used.

British Medical Journal


 
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