Federal regulators approved the first anti-depressant skin patch today, providing a different way to administer a drug already used by Parkinson’s disease patients.
The Food and Drug Administration approved the selegiline transdermal patch, agency spokeswoman Susan Cruzan said. The drug belongs to a class of medicines that is rarely a first or even second choice to treat depression.
It will be marketed as Emsam, said Somerset Pharmaceuticals Inc., which developed the drug, and Bristol-Myers Squib Co., which will market it.
The FDA will require the drug to bear a so-called “black-box” warning of the risks of suicidal thoughts and behaviours in children and adolescents treated with anti-depressants. The drug is meant for use only by adults.