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Effectiveness of fluoxetine and doxepin in treatment of melancholia in depressed patients.

Author(s): Sandor P, Baker B, Irvine J, Dorian P, McKessok D, Mendlowitz S

Affiliation(s): Tourette's Syndrome Clinic, Toronto Hospital, Ontario, Canada.

Publication date & source: 1998, Depress Anxiety., 7(2):69-72.

Publication type: Clinical Trial; Comparative Study ; Randomized Controlled Trial; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

It has been suggested that serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) may be less effective than tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) in treatment of melancholic depression. We treated 36 depressed ambulatory patients with doxepin or fluoxetine in a double-blind, randomized 6-week trial with placebo run-in. Seven patients treated with doxepin and 13 patients treated with fluoxetine met diagnostic criteria for melancholic depression. Average daily dose was 169.4 +/- 41.6 mg for doxepin and 36.8 +/- 18 mg for fluoxetine. We observed a 50% response rate in both treatment groups, using as outcome criterion reduction of Hamilton Depression Scale Score to less than 10. Regardless of how strict the definition of response, we found fluoxetine to be as effective as doxepin in our group of melancholic outpatients.

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