Common Antidepressant Sertraline Does Not Improve Depression in Chronic Kidney Disease Patients Interview with:

Dr. Susan Hedayati MD University of Texas Southwestern Dallas, Texas

Dr. Hedayati

Dr. Susan Hedayati MD
Yin Quan-Yuen Distinguished Professorship in Nephrology
University of Texas Southwestern
Dallas, Texas What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: We previously showed that Major Depression is associated with a significantly higher risk of death, dialysis initiation, and hospitalization among patients with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD). Now we show that a common antidepressant medication, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI), sertraline, does not improve depression in this patient population, a chronically ill group that is not only at significantly increased risk for developing depression but also its serious complications. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: These results provide evidence regarding the lack of efficacy of sertraline in patients with CKD that would change clinical practice. In addition, those treated with sertraline experienced a significantly higher incidence of gastrointestinal side effects compared to those treated with placebo. So treatment with a common antidepressant sertraline did not improve depression, but also resulted in more side effects. This could have a great impact on how we treat depression in our patients with Chronic Kidney Disease. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: Since 25% of Chronic Kidney Disease patients suffer from depression which is likely resistant to standard antidepressants, there is an urgent need for researchers to investigate the unique biological mechanisms of this subtype of depression and develop novel treatment strategies. Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: This is yet another study in patients with a chronic disease that shows that commonly-used SSRI type antidepressant medications are not efficacious for the treatment of major depression. Previous clinical trials also showed that these antidepressants were not effective in treating patients with asthma or congestive heart failure. I have no disclosures. Thank you for your contribution to the community.


CKD Antidepressant Sertraline Trial (CAST) 

Late-Breaking Clinical Trial Posters
November 03, 2017
Hedayati, Susan et al

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.


[wysija_form id=”1″]






Last Updated on November 8, 2017 by Marie Benz MD FAAD