SSRI and SNRI withdrawal symptoms reported on an internet forum

Tom Stockmann, Dolapo Odegbaro, Sami Timimi, Joanna Moncrieff
International Journal of Risk & Safety in Medicine 2018, 29 (3-4): 175-180

BACKGROUND: Antidepressant withdrawal symptoms are well-recognised, but their potential duration remains uncertain.

OBJECTIVE: We aimed to describe the characteristics of withdrawal associated with two popular classes of antidepressants, including duration.

METHODS: We analysed the content of a sample of posts on an antidepressant withdrawal website. We compared the characteristics of withdrawal associated with SSRIs and SNRIs, including time of onset, duration and nature of symptoms.

RESULTS: 110 posts about SSRI withdrawal, and 63 concerning SNRI withdrawal, were analysed. The mean duration of withdrawal symptoms was significantly longer with SSRIs than SNRIs: 90.5 weeks (standard deviation, SD, 150.0) and 50.8 weeks (SD 76.0) respectively; p = 0.043). Neurological symptoms, such as 'brain zaps,' were more common among SNRI users (p = 0.023). Psychosexual/genitourinary symptoms may be more common among SSRI users (p = 0.054).

LIMITATIONS: The website aims to help people with antidepressant withdrawal, and is therefore likely to attract people who have difficulties. Length of prior use of antidepressants was long, with a mean of 252.2 weeks (SD 250.8).

CONCLUSIONS: People accessing antidepressant withdrawal websites report experiencing protracted withdrawal symptoms. There are some differences in the characteristics of withdrawal associated with different classes of antidepressants.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Available on the App Store

Available on the Play Store
Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"