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IPFS News Link • Science, Medicine and Technology

How depression and breast cancer are linked

•, by Dr. Veronique Desaulniers

Antidepressants may lead to breast cancer  

The first connection has to do with pharmaceutical antidepressants. "Estrogen receptor (ER)-positive" breast cancer accounts for 70% of all breast cancer cases. A 2016 investigation published in the Psychopharmacology Journal found that the chemical paroxetine, a SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor) drug "was associated with a 620 percent increase in the rate of breast cancer in women who had taken it over a four-year period."

Paroxetine is also known under the brand names Paxil, Pexeva, Aropax, Seroxat, Sereupin and Brisdelle. The same study found bisphenol A, or BPA, in these brands. BPA is a known xenoestrogen. It should also be noted that pharmaceutical anti-depressant use in the United States rose by 400 percent between 1998 and 2008. It isn't surprising, then, that breast cancer rates rose during that time as well. (Related: Antidepressant Paxil, commonly precribed for depressed cancer patients, increases risk of breast cancer.)