Study: Antidepressants may increase fracture risks

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Certain drugs commonly used to treat depression may increase bone loss in the elderly, thereby putting them at greater risk for fractures, according to a new study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

The class of antidepressant medications known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors was found to be associated with this loss of bone density. The class includes the drugs Prozac and Zoloft.

Researchers at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, studied nearly 3,000 women with an average age of about 79 over a period of five years. Higher rates of hipbone loss were seen among those women taking an SSRI compared with those who took tricyclic antidepressants or no drugs for depression, according to the study report.