Osteoporosis International

, Volume 24, Issue 1, pp 121–137 | Cite as

Relationship between use of antidepressants and risk of fractures: a meta-analysis

  • V. RabendaEmail author
  • D. Nicolet
  • C. Beaudart
  • O. Bruyère
  • J.-Y. Reginster
Original Article



It has been shown that antidepressants would have a direct action on bone metabolism and would be associated with increased fracture risk. Results from this large meta-analysis show that both SSRIs and TCAs are associated with a moderate and clinically significant increase in the risk of fractures of all types.


This study seeks to investigate the relationship between use of antidepressants and the risk of fracture.


An exhaustive systematic research of case–control and cohort studies published or performed between 1966 and April 2011 that reported risk estimates of fracture associated with use of antidepressants was performed using MEDLINE, PsycINFO, and the Cochrane Systematic Review Database, manual review of the literature, and congressional abstracts. Inclusion, quality scoring, and data abstraction were performed systematically by three independent reviewers.


A total of 34 studies (n = 1,217,464 individuals) were identified. Compared with non-users, the random effects pooled RR of fractures of all types, among antidepressant users, were 1.39 (95%CI 1.32–1.47). Use of antidepressants were associated with a 42 %, 47 %, and 38 % risk increase in non-vertebral, hip, and spine fractures, respectively ([For non-vertebral fractures: RR = 1.42, 95%CI 1.34–1.51]; [For hip fractures: RR = 1.47, 95%CI 1.36–1.58]; [For spine fractures: RR = 1.38, 95%CI 1.19–1.61]). Studies examining SSRI use showed systematically a higher increase in the risk of fractures of all types, non-vertebral, and hip fractures than studies evaluating TCA use.


Results from this large meta-analysis show that both SSRIs and TCAs are associated with a moderate and clinically significant increase in the risk of fractures of all types.


Antidepressants Fractures Meta-analysis Selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitor Tricyclic antidepressants 



The authors acknowledge the support by a research grant from the Leon Fredericq Foundation of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Liège.

Role of funding

The funders played no role in study design, data collection, data analysis, data interpretation, or writing of the report.

Conflicts of interest

V. Rabenda received research grants from Servier and Nycomed. O. Bruyère received research grants from GlaxoSmithKline, IBSA, Merck Sharp & Dohme, Theramex, Novartis, Pfizer, Rottapharm, and Servier; consulting or lecture fees from IBSA, Rottapharm, and Servier; reimbursement for attending meetings from IBSA, Merck Sharp & Dohme, Novartis, Pfizer, Rottapharm, Theramex, and Servier. JY Reginster has received consulting fees or paid advisory boards from Servier, Novartis, Negma, Lilly, Wyeth, Amgen, GlaxoSmithKline, Roche, Merckle, Nycomed, NPS, Theramex; lecture fees when speaking at the invitation of a commercial sponsor from Merck Sharp and Dohme, Lilly, Rottapharm, IBSA, Genevrier, Novartis, Servier, Roche, GlaxoSmithKline, Teijin, Teva, Ebewee Pharma, Zodiac, Analis, Theramex, Nycomed, Novo-Nordisk; grant support from Bristol Myers Squibb, Merck Sharp & Dohme, Rottapharm, Teva, Eli Lilly, Novartis, Roche, GlaxoSmithKline, Amgen, Servier.


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Copyright information

© International Osteoporosis Foundation and National Osteoporosis Foundation 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • V. Rabenda
    • 1
    Email author
  • D. Nicolet
    • 1
  • C. Beaudart
    • 1
  • O. Bruyère
    • 1
  • J.-Y. Reginster
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Public Health, Epidemiology and Health EconomicsUniversity of LiègeLiègeBelgium

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