Serotonin Selective Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) and Stroke

Curr Neurol Neurosci Rep. 2018 Oct 23;18(12):100. doi: 10.1007/s11910-018-0904-9.


Purpose of review: The interest in SSRIs after stroke has increased in the past few years, with better knowledge of post-stroke depression and with the demonstrated capacity of some SSRIs to act on the functional recovery of non-depressed subjects.

Recent findings: Arguments for the action of SSRIs in favour of post-stroke neurological function recovery have improved through new elements: basic science and preclinical data, positive clinical trials and repeated series of stroke patient meta-analysis, and confirmation of favourable safety conditions in post-stroke patients. Global coherence is appearing, showing that SSRIs improve stroke recovery in non-depressed patients when given for 3 months after the stroke, with highly favourable safety conditions and a favourable benefit/risk ratio. Large series are still needed.

Keywords: Brain plasticity; Ischaemic stroke; Neuroprotection; Post-stroke depression; Recovery from stroke; SSRIs.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Depression / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Recovery of Function / drug effects
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Stroke / drug therapy*
  • Stroke / physiopathology


  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors