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The Doctors welcome psychiatrist Dr. Domenick Sportelli to discuss serotonin syndrome and why people taking anti-depressants should be aware of it.
Dr. Sportelli explains that serotonin is a brain chemical that is linked to feeling good and a positive mood. When someone takes an anti-depressant the serotonin in your brain and central nervous system increases and too much serotonin in the body can lead to serotonin syndrome. The symptoms can include delirium, high body temperature, agitation, increased reflexes, tremor, sweating, dilated pupils, and diarrhea.
He says the most common reason for someone developing serotonin syndrome is when someone takes some other type of medication that interacts with the anti-depressant.
Dr. Sportelli says that certain types of over-the-counter products like cold medicine with Dextromethorphan, anti-nausea medicine like Zofran and the herbal supplement St. John's Wart can increase serotonin levels, which can increase your levels and possibly lead to serotonin syndrome.
He recommends always talking to your doctor about everything you are taking including all types of medications and herbal supplements. If you or a loved one believes that they are experiencing serotonin syndrome The Doctors recommend seeking medical attention.