Les enfants doivent-ils prendre des antidépresseurs ?

Les 12 derniers mois ont été témoins de changements radicaux et d'une controverse considérable portant sur le mode de traitement de la dépression des enfants et des adolescents. Bien que peu d'antidépresseurs aient reçu une licence pour un usage pédiatrique, les taux de prescription de ces médicaments pour les moins de 18 ans ont augmenté d'environ 60 % au cours de la derničre décennie, plus d'un million d'enfants et d'adolescents recevant des inhibiteurs sélectifs du recaptage de la sérotonine (ISRS).

Toutefois, ŕ l'heure actuelle, les préoccupations relatives ŕ la sécurité et aux effets secondaires de ces médicaments chez les enfants et les adolescents, y compris les taux de suicide élevés, ont éveillé l'attention des organismes de régulation de plusieurs pays. Aprčs avoir examiné tous les essais pédiatriques pertinents, la MHRA (Medinces and Heathcare products Regulatory Agency) du Royaume-Uni a indiqué que les risques l'emportaient sur les avantages pour tous les ISRS (ŕ l'exception de la fluoxetine) et que ces produits ne devaient pas ętre prescrits en tant que nouveau traitement pour les patients de moins de 18 ans souffrant d'une maladie dépressive.

Pour la premičre fois, la MHRA a rendu public un résumé de l'étude sur laquelle se fonde cette décision, incluant les données d'efficacité et de sécurité de tous les essais, qu'elles aient déjŕ été publiées ou non. Cette action s'est avérée importante car environ la moitié des essais n'avaient jamais été publiés dans des journaux lus par les pairs.

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