Painkillers cut antidepressants efficacy
Tue, 26 Apr 2011 12:00:02 GMT
Some of the common painkillers such as Aspirin and Ibuprofen may negatively affect the efficacy of the SSRIs, the most widely used antidepressants.
The SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) such as Prozac and Celexa are a class of antidepressants commonly taken for depression, anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Rockefeller University researchers studied the effect of giving non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin to the mice that were already taking Celexa.
The findings showed lower blood levels of Celexa in the mice taking the combination of the antidepressant and a NSAIDs painkiller.
Reportedly, the symptoms of depression decreased by 55 percent in patients taking an antidepressant and NSAID together while only 45 percent of those who were taking an anti-inflammatory alone experienced a significant relief of depressive symptoms.
Compared with those taking antidepressant alone, mice consuming a combination of painkiller and antidepressant also did worse on tests measuring their stress and depression levels, according to the report published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Moreover, the researchers found the same results after analyzing data from a previous study which had followed more than 4,000 people treated with antidepressants for over 7 years.
“It appears there's a very strong antagonistic relationship between NSAIDs and SSRIs,” said lead author Jennifer Warner-Schmidt. “This may be one reason why the response rate (in patients of SSRIs) is so low.”
Researchers, however, failed to distinguish between individuals who had taken NSAID only once or twice in the past 12 weeks and those who were regularly taking the drug for conditions such as arthritis.
They were also incapable of reporting the main cause contributing to the findings; as a result, further studies are needed to assess the interaction between NSAIDs and SSRIs.