June 10, 2010
By S.L. Baker
(NaturalNews) Of the 35 million Americans who are age 65 or older, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) claims about 7 million of them suffer from clinical depression — and millions are on the prescription antidepressant drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as Prozac, Paxil, Lexapro and Zoloft. Hyped by Big Pharma as the way to solve depression problems in all age groups, these medications come with a litany of serious side effects, including some that are particularly dangerous for elders.
For example, a University of Minnesota study found SSRIs increase the rate of bone loss in older men and women. And now there’s even more reason for seniors to be wary of taking SSRIs. New research just published in Ophthalmology, the journal of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, concludes taking these antidepressants substantially raises the risk of sight-threatening cataracts.
A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye that affects vision. In fact, as cataracts progress, they can cause enough deterioration of eyesight that surgery is needed to remove them. Although cataracts are common in older people, there are many factors that can increase a person’s risk of actually developing the eye problem, including exposure to cigarette smoke, air pollution, and heavy alcohol consumption. And now you can add taking SSRIs to that list.