Skip to main content /HEALTH with WebMD.com
CNN.com /HEALTH
CNN TV
EDITIONS

Drug offers hope in teen-age anxiety

(CNN) -- The drug fluvoxamine works well in relieving anxiety disorders in children and teenagers, according to a study in this week's New England Journal of Medicine.

Anxiety may be one of the most common problems affecting young people today. Youngsters with anxiety -- whether it's fear of getting on a school bus or worrying about poor grades -- tend to grow up to become adults with the same condition. They are up to six times more likely to develop major depression or other psychiatric illness, according to experts.

 VIDEO
Medical Correspondent Sanjay Gupta has more on the drug fluvoxamine (April 26)

Play video
(QuickTime, Real or Windows Media)
 

Researchers at the National Institutes of Health followed 128 young people aged 6 to 17 who had been diagnosed with anxiety, social phobia or separation anxiety disorder. They found that 76 percent of the 63 subjects who were given fluvoxamine showed significantly less anxiety, compared with 29 percent of those taking a placebo.

Volunteers were at first given psychotherapy, but it was found to be helpful in only 3 percent of cases.

One researcher agreed that the results were impressive, but remained cautious.

"They nevertheless raise some very important questions about the use of psychotropic medications in children," wrote Dr. Joseph Coyle of Harvard Medical School, in an editorial in the journal.

Fluvoxamine is similar to many other anxiety medications that are available, but it is the only one approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use in children. Sold by Solvay Pharmaceuticals under the brand name Luvox, it is known as a selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitor, in the same class as Prozac, Paxil and Zoloft.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN Medical Correspondent, and Reuters contributed to this report.



RELATED STORIES:
Anti-depressant counters hot flashes from menopause, chemotherapy
December 15, 2000
Government raising caution on use of psychiatric drugs among preschoolers
March 20, 2000
Johnny's new snack: Milk, cookies and Prozac
February 23, 2000
Chat Transcript: Dr. Michael Gordon on Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders
September 15, 1999
ADHD may be overdiagnosed, study says
September 1, 1999

RELATED SITES:
Internet Mental Health: Fluvoxamine
Fluvoxamine and Social Anxiety Disorder
Solvay Pharmaceuticals

Note: Pages will open in a new browser window
External sites are not endorsed by CNN Interactive.



 Search   





MARKETS
4:30pm ET, 4/16
144.70
8257.60
3.71
1394.72
10.90
879.91
 













Back to the top