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30 Jun 2010

Good afternoon Dr. Shrink,

Could you please tell me what is your take on 5-HTP?

I am currently " weening"  myself of Aropax. I''ve been on anti-depros for +/- 10 years - ouch!!!! I want to try a natural product but I hear that St. John''s Ward makes your skin sensitive to the sun. I already have a very sensitive skin, so that is not an option for me.

Also: do you know how safe 5-HTP is when preggies?

Thank you kindly.

Answer 447 views

01 Jan 0001

I have hard that some people may have some skin sensitivity to the sun when on the Wort, but this happens when people are on quite a wide variety of meds, though rarely in most cases, including the Wort.
5-HTP is NOT, absolutely NOT, a "natural product" though it may be marketed and promoted as such, and may be represented as a supplement, which at present evades the requirements for a medicine, that there be evidence of effectiveness and safety. Nowhere in nature does 5HTP grow on trees or otherwise arise in a natural way - it is manufactured in a chemical plant like other substances.
I am not convinced that 5HTP is useful in Depression. And where something is not fully tested as a medicine, there tends to be little research testing very important questions, such as the one you ask, about safety in pregnancy.
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