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New warnings on SSRIs 'unlikely'

A source close to the Committee on Safety of Medicines has denied the committee will conclude SSRIs can pose a suicide risk in adults, after frenzied speculation in the media on its long-awaited report.

But the source admitted GPs would be increasingly 'reluctant' to prescribe antidepressants, with watchful waiting and counselling becoming the new options of choice.

Reports last week claimed the CSM's working group on SSRIs would shortly rule that use of some of the drugs should be restricted because they caused suicidal thoughts in adults.

The reports plunged GPs into fresh confusion over the treatment of depression, with the problems exacerbated by a desperate shortage of provision for alternatives like cognitive behavioural therapy.

But Pulse understands no date has been set for the final report and the expert working group is unlikely to introduce new restrictions or single out any drug for criticism.

Professor Andre Tylee, professor of primary mental health care at the Institute of Psychiatry in London, said GPs should not change their practice before seeing the working group's findings but should ensure they only prescribed medication where indicated.

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