żDeben los nińos tomar antidepresivos?

Durante los pasados 12 meses he sido testigo de cambios radicales y un alto nivel de controversia acerca del modo como se trata la depresión infantil y adolescente. Aunque pocos antidepresivos han sido autorizados para uso pediátrico, los índices de prescripción en el grupo de menores de 18 ańos han aumentado en cerca de un 60% en la última década: más de un millón de nińos y adolescentes reciben los llamados inhibidores selectivos de la recaptación de la serotonina (ISRS).

Sin embargo, en la actualidad la preocupación acerca de la seguridad y los efectos secundarios de tales medicamentos en este grupo (lo que incluye elevados índices de suicidio) ha despertado a los entes reguladores de varios países. Tras evaluar todos los ensayos pediátricos pertinentes, la Agencia Reguladora de Medicamentos y Productos para el Cuidado de la Salud (MHRA) del Reino Unido indicó que los riesgos superan a los beneficios en el caso de la casi totalidad de los ISRS, con excepción de la fluoxetina, y que estos productos no se deben recetar como una nueva terapia para pacientes menores de 18 ańos con enfermedades depresivas.

Por vez primera, la MHRA hizo público un resumen de la evaluación en que basó esta decisión, lo que incluye información sobre la eficacia y seguridad de todos los ensayos, independientemente de si había sido publicada previamente o no. Esto ha sido importante, ya que la mitad de los ensayos no habían sido publicados en revistas periódicas especializadas.

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