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Anti-inflammatories can help curb symptoms of depression, study finds



The major symptoms of depression can be curbed by anti-inflammatories, according to a new study.

Research published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry found that anti-inflammatory agents, such as aspirin, paracetamol, statins and antibiotics can help relieve the symptoms of depression.

The study analysed evidence from 26 studies and the pooled data analysis of the studies showed that the anti-inflammatory agents were 52% more effective in reducing symptom severity than a placebo, and 79% more effective in eliminating symptoms.

Researchers found that as well as helping relieve the symptoms of depression, the effects of these anti-inflammatories were even stronger when added to the patient’s standard antidepressant treatment.

The authors said that given the chronic cause of depression, quality of life and adverse effects should be further investigated in clinical trials.

However, they concluded: ‘The results of this systematic review suggest that anti-inflammatory agents play an antidepressant role in patients with major depressive disorder and are reasonably safe.’

It comes after NICE revised it’s depression guidance to warn of the severe withdrawal symptoms of antidepressants.