Most of us carry and commonly administer medications that affect the neurotransmitter serotonin (e.g. Fentanyl). Additionally, most of our patients with a history of depression and/or anxiety are prescribed selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI’s). In this episode, we discuss Serotonin Syndrome: a dangerous condition precipitated by the combined use of these commonly administered serotonergic drugs. Tune in as we discuss various drug combinations, the mechanism driving the resulting signs/symptoms, and the treatment course we should take to reverse these adverse effects.
Mechanisms of Serotonin Syndrome and the Drugs Associated with Each
Differentiating Serotonin Syndrome Among Common Presentations
Hunter Serotonin Toxicity Criteria (HSTC)
Bartlett, D. (2017, February). Drug induced serotonin syndrome. Critical Care Nurse, 37, 49-54.
Parks, V., Philipp A.W., Raje S., Plotka A., Schechter J., Connell S., Chalon S., (2012, February). Concomitant blockade of 5-HT1A receptor and 5-HT transporter: Use of the Hunter Serotonin Toxicity Criteria in a clinical pharmacology study. European Neuropsychopharmacology, 22(2), 92-99.
Rojas-Fernandez, C. H. (2014, October 17). Can 5-HT3 antagonists really contribute to serotonin toxicity? A call for clarity and pharmacological law and order. Retrieved December 21, 2017, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4883185
Volpi-Abadie, J., Kaye, A. M., & Kaye, A. D. (2013). Serotonin syndrome. The Ochsner Journal, 13(4), 533-540.