Paroxetine

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Paroxetine (also known by the trade names Aropax, Paxil, Seroxat) is an SSRI antidepressant. Marketing of the drug began in 1992 by the pharmaceutical company SmithKline Beecham, now GlaxoSmithKline. Paroxetine is used to treat major depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, social anxiety, and generalized anxiety disorder[1] in adult outpatients.

In adults, the efficacy of paroxetine for depression is comparable to that of older tricyclic antidepressants, with fewer side effects and lower toxicity.[2][3] Differences with newer antidepressants are subtler and mostly confined to side effects. It shares the common side effects and contraindications of other SSRIs, with high rates of nausea, somnolence, and sexual side effects. Unlike two other popular SSRI antidepressants, fluoxetine and sertraline, paroxetine is associated with clinically significant weight gain[4] and statistically significant increase in the risk of suicidality in adults.[5] Pediatric trials of paroxetine for depression did not demonstrate efficacy and showed an increase in the risk of harmful outcomes, including episodes of self-harm and potentially suicidal behavior.[6][7][8]

Discontinuing paroxetine is associated with a high risk of discontinuation or withdrawal syndrome.[9][10] Due to the increased risk of birth defects, pregnant women or women planning to become pregnant are recommended to consult with their physician.[11][12][13][14][15]

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