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Dopamine Agonist Drugs Strongly Linked to Impulse Control Disorders

Author Brian Finehout-Henry

A study published in JAMA Internal Medicine on October 20, 2014 has found a strong association between dopamine agonist drugs and the development of impulse control disorders.

About the Dopamine Agonists Study

According to WebMD, dopamine agonists are prescribed in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease, restless legs syndrome, and hyperprolactinemia and function like dopamine by binding to and turning on the dopamine receptors.

The study looked at adverse event reports to the FDA for impulse control disorders and found that six dopamine agonist drugs were responsible for roughly 45% of the complaints, according to the New England Journal of Medicine Journal Watch.

The six dopamine agonists are pramipexole (brand name Mirapex), ropinirole (Requip), cabergoline (Dostinex), bromocriptine (Parlodel), rotingotine (Neupro), and apomorphine (APOKYN). The authors found that all six dopamine agonists showed increased risk of developing a severe impulse control disorder, such as pathological gambling, hypersexuality, and compulsive shopping.

Dopamine Agonists Are 277 Times More Likely to Cause Impulse Control Disorders

Reuters reports that the authors found dopamine agonists were 277 times more likely to be associated with impulse control disorders compared to other medications. Journal Watch reports that pramipexole had the highest risk of developing impulse control disorders, at 456 times more likely compared to other medications.

A commentary accompanying the article reports that due to the strong association, a causal connection is likely, according to HealioMedscape reports that other researches have found a link between dopamine agonists and impulse control disorders and that the link is strongest with the dopamine drugs targeting the D3 dopamine receptor.

Previous studies have found that there is an association between dopamine agonists, especially pramipexole, and pathological gambling, that these drugs are associated with numerous behaviors that can serious psychosocial consequences, and that the impulse control behaviors seem to stem from activation of the D3 dopamine receptor.

Authors of the Study Want Black Box Warnings

The authors want the FDA to add Black Box warnings, the most serious warning from the FDA, to the dopamine agonist due to the strong association and serious consequences of the adverse events, according to NPR.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the rate of these impulse control disorders could be as high as 18% among dopamine agonist users. Monthly Prescribing Reference reports the study author, Dr. Thomas Moore, has expressed that this is a major drug safety issue.

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Toddler Injured After Falling From Window in Seattle

Author Jarod Cassidy

A toddler was hospitalized Monday after falling nearly 15 feet from a Lake City apartment window.

Child Pushed Through Window Screen

According to KING News, the incident occurred around 5 pm Monday at an apartment complex in Seattle’s Lake City neighborhood.

Authorities responded to 12314 32nd Avenue NE after receiving a call that the child had fallen from an apartment above a parking garage and landed on the pavement near a dumpster. Witnesses reported hearing a loud bang then a baby crying.

Reports indicate that the 1-year-old climbed on top of a piece of furniture, pushed the window’s screen out of place, and fell to the ground below.

The boy was rushed to an area hospital where he is listed in stable condition.

Child Window Fall Statistics

  • A study published in the journal Pediatrics found that 98,415 children were treated in emergency rooms for window-related fall injuries between 1990 and 2008 – this averages to more than 5,000 injuries every year.
  • In 28 percent of those incidents, the child required an extended hospital stay.
  • Every year, 15 to 20 children will die from injuries suffered after falling through a window.
  • The vast majority of children injured in window-related falls are under the age of four.

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Man Killed in Austin Collision

Author Jarod Cassidy

A man in his 60’s was killed Thursday afternoon when two cars collided near the intersection of Jollyville Road and Taylor Draper Lane in Northwest Austin.

Details of the Austin Accident

According to the Austin American-Statesman, the accident occurred around 12:15 pm Thursday.

One man was pronounced dead at the scene, and a woman was transported to St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center with serious injuries.

A third person was hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries. Four others were involved in the accident, but did not sustain injuries.

Authorities are still investigating the accident – the identities of those involved in the crash have not been released.

Texas Car Crash Statistics

The following information was provided by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT):

  • 3,377 people were killed in auto accidents in Texas in 2014, marking a 1.05 percent decrease from the 3,413 deaths recorded in 2012.
  • Another 232,041 people were injured with 89,270 people sustaining a serious injury.
  • 1,883 people were killed in auto accident that occurred along rural stretches of road and 523 people were killed in head on collisions.

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