1. What is Serotonin Syndrome?
Serotonin syndrome occurs when you take medications that cause high levels of the chemical serotonin to accumulate in your body. It can occur when you increase the dose of such a drug or add a new drug to the ones you take already. Certain illicit drugs and dietary supplements also can cause serotonin syndrome.
2. What medicines / suppliments can cause Serotonin Syndrome?
A number of over-the-counter and prescription drugs can lead to serotonin syndrome, especially antidepressants. Illicit drugs and dietary supplements also can cause the condition. These drugs and supplements include but aren't limited to:
- Serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), antidepressants such as citalopram (Celexa), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem), fluvoxamine, paroxetine (Paxil) and sertraline (Zoloft)
- Serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), antidepressants such as trazodone and venlafaxine (Effexor)
- Bupropion, an antidepressant and tobacco-addiction medication (Wellbutrin, Zyban)
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), antidepressants such as isocarboxazid (Marplan) and phenelzine (Nardil)
- Anti-migraine medications such as almotriptan (Axert), naratriptan (Amerge), sumatriptan (Imitrex) and zolmitriptan (Zomig)
- Pain medications such as fentanyl (Sublimaze), meperidine (Demerol), pentazocine, (Talwin) and tramadol (Ultram)
- Lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid), a mood stabilizer
- Illicit drugs, including LSD, Ecstasy, cocaine and amphetamines
- Herbal supplements, including St. John's wort and ginseng
- Over-the-counter cough and cold medications containing dextromethorphan (Robitussin DM, Sudal DM)
- Anti-nausea medications such as granisetron (Kytril), metoclopramide (Reglan) and ondansetron (Zofran)
- Linezolid (Zyvox), an antibiotic
- Ritonavir (Norvir), an anti-retroviral medication used to treat HIV/AIDS
3. What are the symptoms of Serotonin Syndrome?
Serotonin syndrome symptoms typically occur within several hours of taking a new drug or increasing the dose of a drug you're already taking. Signs and symptoms include:
- Agitation or restlessness
- Rapid heart rate
- Dilated pupils
- Loss of muscle coordination or twitching muscles
- Heavy sweating
- Goose bumps
Severe serotonin syndrome can be life-threatening. Signs and symptoms include:
- High fever
- Irregular heartbeat
Refrences and informative links