Well­ness Arti­cles

Anti­de­pres­sants And Chil­dren Not A Good Mix

The April 10th issue of the British Med­ical Jour­nal (BMJ) con­tains a clin­i­cal review that shows that anti­de­pres­sants should not be pre­scribed as a med­ica­tion for depres­sion in peo­ple under 18 years of age. Accord­ing to the BMJ, Aus­tralian researchers ana­lyzed exist­ing results from six ran­dom­ized con­trolled tri­als of newer anti­de­pres­sants and their use in chil­dren. The review team found what they called “dis­turb­ing short­com­ings”, in the study results pub­lished on selec­tive sero­tonin reup­take inhibitors (SSRIs), such as Effexor, Prozac, Paxil and Zoloft.

As a result of the study, the researchers stated “Anti­de­pres­sant drugs can­not con­fi­dently be rec­om­mended as a treat­ment option for child­hood depres­sion.” The BMJ report itself stated, “Two small stud­ies found no sta­tis­ti­cally sig­nif­i­cant advan­tage for anti­de­pres­sants over placebo on any of the out­come mea­sures reported. Of the remain­ing four papers, two did and two did not show sta­tis­ti­cally sig­nif­i­cant advan­tages for anti­de­pres­sants over placebo on pri­mary out­come measures.”

In addi­tion to not see­ing any ben­e­fits, the report also noted that there may be a con­flict of inter­est as the phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­pa­nies paid for the tri­als and oth­er­wise remu­ner­ated the authors of at least three of the four larger studies.

The BMJ study con­cluded: “We are con­cerned that biased report­ing and over­con­fi­dent rec­om­men­da­tions in treat­ment guide­lines may mis­lead doc­tors, patients, and fam­i­lies. Many will under­value non-​drug treat­ments that are prob­a­bly both safer and more effective.

Ran­dom Article

The above head­line appeared on the Octo­ber 1, 2004, “News­wise”, and the Octo­ber 6, 2004 “News​-Med​ical​.net”. These news sto­ries stemmed from a

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