The Relationship Between Oseltamivir and Suicide in Pediatric Patients


By bhadmin February 2, 2021

Studies examining the association between use of oseltamivir and neuropsychiatric events (including suicide) among children have had mixed findings and have been limited by small sample size, reliance on older data, and potential confounding. We undertook an analysis that addresses these limitations. Using a national administrative claims database and a case-crossover design that minimized confounding, we analyzed data from 5 contemporary influenza seasons (2009–2013) for individuals aged 1 to 18 years and ascertained oseltamivir exposure from pharmacy dispensing. We identified 21,407 suicide-related events during this study period, 251 of which were in oseltamivir-exposed children. In case-crossover analysis, we did not find any significant association with suicide either for oseltamivir exposure (odds ratio = 0.64; 95% CI, 0.39–1.00; P = .05) or for influenza diagnosis alone (odds ratio = 0.63; 95% CI, 0.34–1.08; P = .10). Our findings suggest that oseltamivir does not increase risk of suicide in the pediatric population.

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