The effects of sertraline on blood lipids, glucose, insulin and HBA1C levels: A prospective clinical trial on depressive patients

J Res Med Sci. 2011 Dec;16(12):1525-31.


Background: In this study, we aimed to investigate the possible effects of sertraline on blood glucose and lipid levels as risk factors for cardiovascular disease in depressive patients.

Methods: Eight male and twelve female depressive patients, diagnosed according to DSM-IV criteria, were included in this study. The subjects aged 19-50 years, did not smoke, and had normal body mass index (BMI), homeostasis model assessment-estimated insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) values, blood pressure, blood glucose, insulin and lipid levels. Sertraline therapy (50 mg/day) was started. Patients with diabetes mellitus, heart disease, pregnancy, and those taking other drugs were excluded from the study. Blood glucose, insulin, high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-C), low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C), and triglyceride values were measured in patients before, and at the 4(th), 8(th) and 12(th) weeks after treatment with sertraline. Moreover, HbA1C levels were measured at the beginning and at the end of the treatment (at 12(th) weeks).

Results: There were no significant differences in physical examination (blood pressure, BMI, body weight, height, waist circumference) and laboratory findings (glucose, HDL-C, LDL-C, HOMA-IR and HbA1C levels) at the 12(th) week after of treatment with sertraline compared to pretreatment values. However, insulin levels at the 4(th), 8(th) and 12(th) weeks significantly increased compared with pretreatment values. Likewise, triglyceride levels at the 8(th) and 12(th) weeks significantly increased compared with pretreatment values.

Conclusions: Sertraline-treated patients have to be followed up for blood insulin and triglyceride levels. In addition, their treatment plan needs to be adjusted as necessary to prevent possible metabolic changes.

Keywords: Glucose; HbA1C; Insulin; Lipid; Sertraline.