Tricyclic antidepressants safer in the elderly

TRICYCLICS are the safest class of antidepressants for older people with depression, UK researchers have found after analysing a large general practice database.

Among more than 60,000 people aged 65 years or older, the researchers found patients receiving low-dose tricyclics had a significantly lower rate of stroke, fracture and epilepsy than those taking SSRIs or other antidepressants.

Patients on tricyclic anti-depressants also had a significantly lower rate of hyponatraemia and falls than those on SSRIs, and a significantly lower rate of attempted suicide or self-harm than those on other antidepressants.