A comparison of treatment of paraphilias with three serotonin reuptake inhibitors: a retrospective study

Bull Am Acad Psychiatry Law. 1996;24(4):525-32.


Treatment of the paraphilic disorders using behavioral, cognitive, pharmacological, and social interventions has been shown to have limited success with poorly motivated or noncompliant patients. Researchers have speculated on the role of the serotonergic system in the paraphilic disorders. Recent anecdotal studies have reported successful results with the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) in the treatment of the paraphilic disorders. This retrospective study evaluates and compares the effectiveness of three SSRIs in a group of paraphilics (N = 58). The individual effectiveness of fluvoxamine, fluoxetine, and sertraline were examined and compared. Results found that the severity of fantasies decreased and that there were no significant differences in the reported efficacy between fluvoxamine, fluoxetine, and sertraline. Although double blind placebo crossover studies are still needed to assess the efficacy of these agents, this study further supports the growing body of literature on the potential use of these drugs in the treatment of the paraphilias.

MeSH terms

  • 1-Naphthylamine / adverse effects
  • 1-Naphthylamine / analogs & derivatives
  • 1-Naphthylamine / therapeutic use
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Fluoxetine / adverse effects
  • Fluoxetine / therapeutic use
  • Fluvoxamine / adverse effects
  • Fluvoxamine / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Libido / drug effects
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Paraphilic Disorders / diagnosis
  • Paraphilic Disorders / drug therapy*
  • Paraphilic Disorders / psychology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors / adverse effects
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Sertraline
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors
  • Fluoxetine
  • 1-Naphthylamine
  • Fluvoxamine
  • Sertraline