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Efficacy of Citalopram in the prevention of recurrent depression in elderly patients: Placebo-controlled study of maintenance therapy

  • René Klysner (a1), Jesper Bent-Hansen (a1), Hanne L. Hansen (a1), Marianne Lunde (a1), Elisabeth Pleidrup (a1), Dorte Loldrup Poulsen (a1), Marc Andersen (a2) and Hans Erik Høpfner Petersen (a2)...

Abstract

Background

The highly recurrent nature of major depression in the young and the elderly warrants long-term antidepressant treatment.

Aims

To compare the prophylactic efficacy of citalopram and placebo in elderly patients; to evaluate long-term tolerability of citalopram.

Method

Out-patients, ⩾65 years, with unipolar major depression (DSM – IV: 296.2 x or 296.3 x) and Montgomery – Åsberg Depression Rating Scale score ⩾22 were treated with citalopram 20–40 mg for 8 weeks. Responders continued on their final fixed dose of citalopram for 16 weeks before randomisation to double-blind treatment with citalopram or placebo for at least 48 weeks.

Results

Nineteen of the 60 patients using citalopram v. 41 of the 61 patients using placebo had recurrence. Time to recurrence was significantly different between citalopram— and placebo-patients, in favour of citalopram (log-rank test, P < 0.0001). Long-term treatment was well tolerated.

Conclusions

Long-term treatment with citalopram is effective in preventing recurrence of depression in the elderly and is well tolerated.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

Marc Andersen, Biostatistics Department, International Clinical Research, H. Lundbeck A/S, Ottiliavej 9, DK-2500 Valby, Denmark. Tel: +45 36 30 1311, ext. 2302; fax: +45 36 44 0787; e-mail: ma@lundbeck.com

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Declaration of interest

Funded by H. Lundbeck A/S.

Footnotes

References

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Efficacy of Citalopram in the prevention of recurrent depression in elderly patients: Placebo-controlled study of maintenance therapy

  • René Klysner (a1), Jesper Bent-Hansen (a1), Hanne L. Hansen (a1), Marianne Lunde (a1), Elisabeth Pleidrup (a1), Dorte Loldrup Poulsen (a1), Marc Andersen (a2) and Hans Erik Høpfner Petersen (a2)...

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Efficacy of Citalopram in the prevention of recurrent depression in elderly patients: Placebo-controlled study of maintenance therapy

  • René Klysner (a1), Jesper Bent-Hansen (a1), Hanne L. Hansen (a1), Marianne Lunde (a1), Elisabeth Pleidrup (a1), Dorte Loldrup Poulsen (a1), Marc Andersen (a2) and Hans Erik Høpfner Petersen (a2)...
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