What is it about?

Semen parameters and sperm DNA were evaluated in patients receiving selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.

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Why is it important?

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors have become the most commonly prescribed drugs for depression. Although these drugs are safe, adverse events occur in a certain proportion of patients. More than a third of patients receiving SSRIs discontinue treatment due to sexual side effects. About 5% of the adult population in the United Kingdom receive an antidepressant with similar prescribing rates in the United States.


Patients receiving SSRIs had statistically significant impairment in all semen parameters and increased sperm DNA damage. Whether the cessation of SSRI treatment reverses these adverse effect on spermatogenesis remains unclear. Further studies are needed to elucidate the impact of the observed impairment of semen quality on fertility.

Dr Mohammad Reza Safarinejad
University of Medical Sceices

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This page is a summary of: Sperm DNA Damage and Semen Quality Impairment After Treatment With Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors Detected Using Semen Analysis and Sperm Chromatin Structure Assay, The Journal of Urology, November 2008, Wolters Kluwer Health,
DOI: 10.1016/j.juro.2008.07.034.
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