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SSRIs: Cardiovascular Benefits?

November 18, 2010

The cardiovascular morbidity and other mortality risks associated with untreated depression are well documented. The cardiovascular effects of antidepressants themselves, particularly the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), are still unclear. A new study, however, presented recently at the Experimental Biology 2010 meeting in Anaheim, California, suggests that SSRIs may have some benefit for cardiovascular health.

Preliminary research by a group at Loyola University Medical Center, led by Evangelos Litinas, MD, found evidence suggesting that SSRIs may slow platelet aggregation in patients being treated for depression.

The investigators drew multiple blood samples from 25 patients receiving SSRIs and 25 healthy non-SSRI patients. After adding a platelet aggregating substance and saline to blood samples at week 4, aggregometer results showed that healthy volunteers and the SSRI group had platelet aggregation rates of 95% and 37%, respectively. Aggregation rates increased by week 8 for the SSRI group.

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(Litinas E. Poster presented at: the Experimental Biology 2010 meeting; April 24-28, 2010; Anaheim, California.) —Lonnie Stoltzfoos


From → Pharmacotherapy

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