Certain anti-depressants double fracture risk
Jan 23, 2007 - 2:21:16 PM

New York, Jan 23 - Daily use of certain anti-depressant drugs could double the risk of fractures in adults above 50 years of age because of their effect on bone physiology, says a new study.

Researchers at the Centre for Bone and Periodontal Research at McGill University in Montreal evaluated 5,008 adults who were aged 50 and above.

They studied them for over five years to see if they experienced 'fragility' fractures -- the type suffered from relatively minor traumas such as falling out of bed, reported the online edition of health Magazine WebMD.

A total of 137 participants reported daily use of Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors - - a class of anti-depressants.

Despite adjusting for factors known to increase fracture risk like falls, low bone density and physical inactivity, the adults on SSRI anti-depressants had twice the risk of fractures than those not on antidepressants.

'In the SSRI group, there were 18 X-ray confirmed fragility fractures out of 137 people or 13.5 percent,' said researcher David Goltzman.

'In the non-user group, there were 317 X-ray confirmed fragility fractures out of 4,871 people, or 6.5 percent,' he added.

'If you are over 50 and your doctor prescribes an SSRI, go have a bone density test first, especially if you have had a fracture from a minor trauma,' suggested Goltzman.

The findings of the study appeared in the Jan 22 issue of the journal 'Archives of Internal Medicine'. But the researchers added that people should not stop taking SSRIs if their doctor thinks that drugs can help them battle depression.

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