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Regulatory authorities in the United Kingdom announced new labeling for the antidepressant drug Effexor (venlafaxine) and other antidepressant drugs known as SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) on December 6, 2004.

For Effexor and the SSRIs, the British regulators increased warnings about:

  • Suicidal feelings and behaviors
  • Individual withdrawal effects

In regards to Effexor, they proclaimed that individuals with heart disease or high blood pressure should not use the drug. The British authorities will only permit certain doctors or medical specialists to administer the drug.

In the US, the FDA has evaluated all existing data and has requested the U.K., and Effexor's manufacturer, for all the information leading to the new warnings. The FDA announced that they would continue to examine all information about individuals taking antidepressant drugs. This includes information about increased suicidal thoughts and amplified risk of suicide.