Researchers from Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center published an article in the May issue of Psychosomatic Medicine showing a six fold increase in atherosclerotic plaque in the coronary arteries of primates when they were taking Zoloft, and SSRI antidepressant. The monkeys were fed an atherogenic diet for 18 months. They were then randomized and half were treated with Zoloft and half with a placebo. Those monkeys that were not depressed had three times the coronary atherosclerosis as the controls. For those monkeys who were depressed, the risk was six time that of placebo!
It is truly amazing that SSRI antidepressants, which have not been shown to be better than placebo for mild to moderate depression, are one of the best selling drugs in the US! Now that coronary atherosclerosis has now come come into question, we have even more reason to question the wisdom of using SSRI antidepressants for mild to moderate depression.