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Adverse Effects of Esketamine for the Treatment of Major Depression Disorder: Findings from Randomized Controlled Trials

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Esketamine is a promising drug which can induce antidepressant effects in Major Depression Disorder (MDD). Several randomized controlled trials (RCTs) have been implemented to assess the efficacy and safety of esketamine for the treatment of MDD. Therefore, we carried out a meta-analysis to assess adverse effect profiles of esketamine for the treatment of MDD. We searched RCTs which were implemented from January 2010 to June 2020 by searching PubMed, Embase and Cochrane Library databases. Finally, four RCTs with 551 patients were included in our study. We pooled 551 patients from 4 RCTs. Compared with placebo, an increased risk of adverse effects was observed in our analysis. After using esketamine, the risk of nausea (RR = 2.34, 95% CI, 1.04 to 5.25, P = 0.04), dissociation (RR = 4.54, 95% CI, 2.36 to 8.73, P < 0.00001), dizziness (RR = 3.00, 95% CI, 1.80 to 5.00, P < 0.0001), vertigo (RR = 7.47, 95% CI, 2.55 to 21.86, P = 0.0002), hypoesthesia (RR = 5.68, 95% CI, 2.06 to 15.63, P = 0.0008), sedation (RR = 3.96, 95% CI, 1.29 to 12.15, P = 0.02) and paresthesia(RR = 3.05, 95% CI, 1.07 to 8.65, P = 0.04)were significantly increased compared with placebo. Our synthesized data analysis revealed drug specific risk profiles. The most frequent adverse effects under treatment with esketamine were nausea, dissociation, dizziness, vertigo, hypoesthesia,sedation and paresthesia.

Yang, S., Wang, J., Li, X., Wang, T., Xu, Z., Xu, X., Zhou, X., & Chen, G. (2021). Adverse Effects of Esketamine for the Treatment of Major Depression Disorder: Findings from Randomized Controlled Trials. The Psychiatric quarterly, 10.1007/s11126-020-09871-x. Advance online publication.

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