Anti-depressants and Surgery

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Story Updated: May 1, 2013

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or SSRI's. are among the most commonly prescribed medications in the United States.

Now, new research, just published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, suggests taking these antidepressants before surgery may increase the risk of adverse outcomes.

The study looked at more than 5-hundred-30 thousand patients over the age of 18...who had major surgery during a two-year span from 2006 to 2008. More than 72,000 had received an SSRI during their hospitalization (Cindy, I was trying not to say perioperative period because people won't know what that is, but I'm not sure during the hospitalization works. Thoughts?).

Researchers analyzed data on length of stay, readmission, bleeding events, heart issues and death after surgery.

After adjusting for factors such as obesity, pulmonary disease and depression, the data showed that patients on SSRIs before surgery had higher odds of bleeding, readmission and in-hospital mortality.

The researchers say further study is needed to determine if other patient factors or the SSRIs themselves are responsible.

I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV with the news that can help you stay healthy, happy, and fit.

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Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, a nonprofit independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association, is part of a family of companies that finances and delivers vital health care services to 1.8 million people across upstate New York. Excellus BlueCross BlueShield provides access to high-quality, affordable health coverage, including valuable health-related resources that our members use every day, such as cost-saving prescription drug discounts and wellness tracking tools in our Step Up program. To learn more, visit www.excellusbcbs.com