A new study published in the Journal of Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapeutics has indicated that the risk of sexual dysfunction in females taking antidepressants may be higher than initially thought. Sexual dysfunction was particularly high among women who were taking antidepressants in a class known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which includes Zoloft, Paxil and Lexapro.
More than 42% of the women in the study experienced sexual dysfunction while taking an SSRI antidepressant, including 95% suffering from decreased desire, 55% suffering from decreased satisfaction and 25% suffering from pain during intercourse. The study is another in a long line of research aimed at determining SSRI side effects.
SSRI antidepressants such as Zoloft and Paxil have also been linked to severe birth defects among women who use the drugs during pregnancy. Zoloft birth defects include persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN), craniosynostosis, omphalocele and congenital heart birth defects.