Antidepressants after a heart attack may help prevent further heart problems
Depression often goes hand-in-hand with acute coronary syndrome - a sudden reduction or blockage of blood flow to the heart. In this randomised clinical trial, Korean researchers investigated the effects of a commonly-used antidepressant, escitalopram, on long-term acute coronary syndrome. From 300 patients with recent acute coronary syndrome and depression, 24-week treatment with escitalopram resulted in fewer major cardiac events than those taking placebo after an eight-year follow-up.
Organisation/s: Chonnam National University Medical School, Republic of Korea
Funder: National Research Foundation of Korea grant(NRF-2015M3C7A1028899) and supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning( grant NRF-2016R1A2A2A05919518). Dr Stewart is partly funded by the National Institute for Health Research Biomedical Research Centre at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and King’s College London. H. Lundbeck A/S provided the study drug
Can Treatment for Depression after a Heart Attack Reduce the Long-Term Risk of Another Cardiac Event?
Bottom Line: Depression has been associated with poorer medical outcomes for patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS), including heart attack and unstable angina. This randomized clinical trial of 300 patients in South Korea examined whether antidepressant treatment after ACS improved long-term cardiac outcomes. Patients received either the antidepressant escitalopram or placebo for 24 weeks. After about eight years of follow-up, the antidepressant escitalopram resulted in a lower occurrence of major adverse cardiac events than placebo (40.9 percent vs. 53.6 percent).