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Prescribing Advice for GPs

An NHS Prescribing Advisers' Blog

New Paroxetine Evidence

The manufacturer of Paroxetine (Seroxat)® has conducted an analysis into clinical trials of paroxetine in adults under instructions from the Food and Drugs Administration.

The Chairman of the Commission on Human Medicines has written to healthcare professionals informing them of the key findings.

The findings do not alter the current prescribing advice relating to Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRI) however they do highlight that:

  • Careful and frequent patient monitoring by healthcare professionals and, where appropriate, other carers, is important in the early stages of treatment with paroxetine, especially if a patient experiences worsening of symptoms or if new symptoms arise after starting treatment
  • Young adults (18-29 years of age) are at a higher background risk of suicidal behaviour than older adults and therefore should be monitored particularly closely

Action: Clinicians are reminded of the need to carefully monitor patients who are prescribed SSRI antidepressants, especially young adults and those prescribed paroxetine.

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