Which medications should be used with caution in the treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in children and adolescents?

Updated: May 17, 2018
  • Author: William M Greenberg, MD; Chief Editor: David Bienenfeld, MD  more...
  • Print
Answer

Physicians are advised to be aware of the following information and to use appropriate caution when considering treatment with SSRIs in the pediatric population.

In December 2003, the UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) issued an advisory that most SSRIs are not suitable for use by persons younger than 18 years for treatment of "depressive illness." After review, this agency decided that the risks to pediatric patients outweighed the benefits of treatment with SSRIs, except fluoxetine (Prozac), which appeared to have a positive risk-benefit ratio in the treatment of depressive illness in patients younger than 18 years.

In October 2003, the FDA issued a public health advisory regarding reports of suicidality in pediatric patients being treated with antidepressant medications for major depressive disorder. This advisory reported suicidality (ideation and attempts) in clinical trials of various antidepressant drugs in pediatric patients. The FDA asked that additional studies be performed, because suicidality occurred in treated and untreated patients with major depression and thus could not be definitively linked to drug treatment.


Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!