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Can I take paroxetine during breast cancer treatment?

Paroxetine (Paxil, Paxil CR, Pexeva) is a selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), a type of antidepressant used to treat a wide range of mental health disorders. Women who are being treated with the breast cancer drug tamoxifen should not take paroxetine because it can interfere with an enzyme needed to convert tamoxifen to its active form in the body. Tamoxifen reduces the risk for recurrence and death due to certain types of breast cancer and researchers have discovered that your risk of death increases if you take paroxetine and tamoxifen together.

If you are taking paroxetine and you have been diagnosed with the type of breast cancer that is treated with tamoxifen, you should discuss other antidepressant options with your doctors. Let your oncologist know all the prescription medicines, over-the-counter remedies, vitamins, minerals or other dietary supplements you are taking to avoid any dangerous interactions.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.