Are antidepressants effective in children and adolescents with depression?

An important controversy has been raised by a recent high-profile meta-analysis, which has focused on the effectiveness of antidepressants in children and adolescents with depression. This meta-analysis is now critically discussed in a recent overview. The two articles – and the accompanying editorials – come to very different conclusions, which leave the clinician at first helpless.

Anne Garti /

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News about the Cardiac Safety of Citalopram

In the January issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry two editorials have been published that deal again with the cardiac safety of citalopram. I have posted a contribution to the discussion last year. In my post from May 4th, 2013, I had discussed the study by Zivin et al. (2013), which had also been published in the American Journal of Psychiatry. Continue reading

Is the Glycine Transporter Inhibitor Sarcosine also Effective in Depression?

Inhibitors of the glycine transporter type 1 (GlyT1) are currently among the most promising substances for drug treatment of psychiatric disorders. Their application in schizophrenic disorders is the most developed, the GlyT1 inhibitor from Roche (Bitopertin®) is in clinical phase III trials. Continue reading

New Antidepressant: Vortioxetine Approved in the U.S.

On September 30th, 2013, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved vortioxetine (Brintellix ®; previously Lu AA21004) for the treatment of depressive disorders. Approval from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) was requested in September 2012. Thus, approval in the EU can be expected soon. The substance was also assessed for the treatment of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD). Vortioxetine is marketed by Takeda and Lundbeck. Continue reading

The Most Transformative Drugs of the Past 25 Years

In the June issue of Nature Reviews Drug Discovery Aaron Kesselheim and Jerry Avorn from Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, published the results of their survey among physicians for the most transformative drugs of the past 25 years (Kesselheim und Avorn, Nat Rev Drug Discov 2013, 12: 425-431). Continue reading

Depression in Pregnancy: To Treat or not to Treat?

The occurrence of depression in pregnancy poses a particular therapeutic challenge, since the benefits and risks of a pharmacotherapy have to be particularly carefully weighed against each other. If the indication is checked for an antidepressant pharmacotherapy during pregnancy, one tends to forget that not only the drug therapy is associated with risks, but also a potential non-treatment. Continue reading