Advertisement

Antiretroviral Efavirenz Associated with Increased Suicide Risk — Physician’s First Watch

Medical News |
July 1, 2014

Antiretroviral Efavirenz Associated with Increased Suicide Risk

By Kelly Young

Edited by David G. Fairchild, MD, MPH, and André Sofair, MD, MPH

Antiretroviral regimens containing efavirenz are associated with a doubling of risk for suicidality in patients with HIV, compared with efavirenz-free regimens, finds a retrospective study in the Annals of Internal Medicine. The drug's label already includes a warning about the risk for psychiatric events, including suicide, but it was uncertain whether the relationship was causal.

In four studies, some 5300 antiretroviral-naive patients with HIV were randomized to regimens either with efavirenz (600 mg daily) or without.

After roughly 96 weeks, the primary outcome of suicidality -- suicidal ideation or attempted or completed suicide -- had occurred at an incidence rate of 8.08 per 1000 person-years in the efavirenz group, versus 3.66 per 1000 in the efavirenz-free group. The efavirenz group also had more completed suicides.

The authors note: "When efavirenz is used as a component of antiretroviral therapy, patients should be monitored carefully for exacerbation of depression or evidence of suicidal thoughts or behavior."

Your Comment

(will not be published)

Filtered HTML

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
Do you have any conflict of interest to disclose?
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.

Vertical Tabs

* Required

Reader comments are intended to encourage lively discussion of clinical topics with your peers in the medical community. We ask that you keep your remarks to a reasonable length, and we reserve the right to withhold publication of remarks that do not meet this standard.

PRIVACY: We will not use your email address, submitted for a comment, for any other purpose nor sell, rent, or share your e-mail address with any third parties. Please see our Privacy Policy.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement