Mind Matters

Symptoms of Serotonin Syndrome

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter, chemical that transfers neural signals. It is produced in the brain and the spinal cord. The chemical helps in regulating the attention, the behavior and the body temperature. It is also present in intestine. Serotonin present in other vital organs, regulates processes such as breathing, digestion and blood flow.

Serotonin syndrome is commonly caused when a combination of drugs are administered. For example when an antidepressant is given along with migraine medication, it usually leads to serotonin syndrome.

Signs and Symptoms of Serotonin Syndrome

Usual manifestations of serotonin syndrome include:

  • Agitation or restlessness
  • Confusion
  • Racing heart
  • Pupil dilation
  • Either poor of loss of muscle coordination
  • Profuse sweating
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Shivering
  • Goose bumps (anserina) – bumps of skin at the base of the body

<span style="font-size: medium;"What are the usually Noticed Severe Serotonin Syndrome Symptoms ?

Some of the Serotonin syndrome symptoms are life threatening. The usually noticed severe serotonin symptoms include the following:

  • High fever
  • Seizures
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Unconsciousness

When to See a Doctor in case of Serotonin Syndrome ?

If you notice the above symptoms, either due to a combination of antidepressant along with migraine medication or due to a single drug, immediately rush to the doctor. Serotonin syndrome needs emergency room treatment.

Caution:

Never use over-the-counter medication (usually used to treat cough, cold, headache, and fever), and illicit drugs. Take your doctor into confidence whenever you use such drugs.

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