How long should a trial of escitalopram treatment be in patients with major depressive disorder, generalised anxiety disorder or social anxiety disorder? An exploration of the randomised controlled trial database


Baldwin, David S., Stein, Dan J., Dolberg, Ornah T. and Bandelow, Borwin (2009) How long should a trial of escitalopram treatment be in patients with major depressive disorder, generalised anxiety disorder or social anxiety disorder? An exploration of the randomised controlled trial database. Human Psychopharmacology, 24, (4), 269-275. (doi:10.1002/hup.1019 ).

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Description/Abstract

Objective: to extend the knowledge of course of improvement in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD), social anxiety disorder (SAD) or generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) participating in randomised placebo-controlled trials (RCTs) and to infer the optimal duration of initial escitalopram treatment in clinical practice, after which intervention might be reasonable in case of non-response.

Methods: post hoc analysis of pooled clinical trial database for escitalopram in MDD (14 studies), GAD (4 studies) and SAD (2 studies). Onset of action was defined as a 20% or more decrease from baseline score in disorder-specific psychopathological rating scales: response as a 50% or more decrease from baseline score.

Results: in MDD, the probability of responding at week 8 if no onset was apparent at week 2 was 43%; in patients with an onset of effect the probability was nearly 80%. Similar patterns were observed in GAD and SAD. The chance of responding beyond week 4 in MDD, GAD and SAD was 20% or less if no effect had occurred by week 2.

Conclusions: the pattern of response in these RCTs suggests that in patients with MDD, GAD or SAD in wider clinical practice, a period of at least 4 weeks is worthwhile before considering further intervention.

Item Type: Article
ISSNs: 0885-6222 (print)
1099-1077 (electronic)
Related URLs:
Keywords: treatment, response, escitalopram, onset of action
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Divisions: University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Medicine > Clinical Neurosciences
University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Medicine
ePrint ID: 148041
Date Deposited: 27 Apr 2010 09:45
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2014 19:08
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/148041

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