Category Archives: Antidepressants

Citalopram and Escitalopram compared

There are significant differences between these two SSRIs. The FDA warned about the risk of QT prolongation with high doses of citalopram, but not escitalopram. Dosing is different too.

To learn more about these similarities and differences check the following video published at the Psychopharmacology Institute website:

Citalopram and Escitalopram: A Summary of Key Differences and Similarities

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Video: Side effects of SSRIs

The following video is a short overview on the pharmacological basis of SSRIs side effects. Outline: Facts about SSRIs adverse effects. Gastrointestinal adverse effects. 5-HT3 and 5-HT4 receptors in the GI tract. 5-HT3 receptors in the brainstem and hypothalamus. CNS adverse effects. 5-HT2A receptor stimulation at the basal ganglia. 5-HT2A and 2C receptors are hypothetically…

Aripiprazole (Abilify) not approved for bipolar disorder

According to a press release, the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) did not accept aripiprazole for the treatment of manic episodes in bipolar I disorder and for the prevention of  new manic episodes. According to the SMC, the manufacturer did not present a sufficiently robust economic analysis to gain acceptance. Psychiatrist Daniel Carlat from “The Carlat…

Agomelatine (Valdoxan) for major depressive episodes

Agomelatine (Valdoxan, Melitor, Thymanax) is a recently marketed new drug for the treatment of major depression with a novel mechanism of action. It can be included in the class of  “other antidepressants”, or classified as a melatonergic drug. Mechanism of action Agomelatine acts as an agonist on melatonin MT1 and MT2 receptors. Additionally, it blocks…

Analysis of antidepressants effectiveness in adolescents: InfoPOEMs podcast

Essential Evidence Plus, formerly InfoPOEMs is a service by John Wiley and Sons that aims to give physicians succinct medical evidence that will impact in their medical practice. In this podcast Dr. Ebell and Dr. Wilkes (National Public Radio) discuss the POEM titled: “Antidepressants only modestly effective for adolescent depression” Listen to the podcast on…

NPS: Desvenlafaxine (Pristiq) not superior to venlafaxine for major depressive disorder

The National Prescribing Service Limited (Australia) made an independent evaluation on the role of desvenlafaxine (Pristiq) for the treatment of major depressive disorder. Summary: Desvenlafaxine is the active metabolite of venlafaxine. There is no evidence that desvenlafaxine is more effective, safer or better tolerated than venlafaxine or other antidepressants. Doses above 50 mg/day are unlikely…

MCQs for USMLE review on psychopharmacology: antipsychotics, benzodiazepines, antidepressants and lithium

These pharmacology MCQs from the UMKC School of Medicine have a different degree of difficulty, but are useful to review pharmacology of psychotropics. Psychotropics Item Number: 11667 correct answer: 4 category: Psychotropics 1. The symptoms of tardive dyskinesia will acutely improve with: 1. administration of diphenhydramine 2. administration of amantadine 3. administration of bromocriptine 4.…Continue Reading

Antidepressants podcast: comments on the latest ACP clinical guidelines

Essential Evidence Plus, formerly InfoPOEMs is a service by John Wiley and Sons that aims to give physicians succinct medical evidence that will impact in their medical practice. In this podcast Dr. Ebell and Dr. Wilkes (National Public Radio) discuss the POEM that analyzes the ACP guidelines (published in Annals of Internal Medicine) on antidepressants.…

Direct-to-consumer advertising (DTCA): the case of the serotonin hypothesis and SSRIs ads

I would like to recommend Pharmamotion readers one of the most popular articles in PLoS Medicine: Serotonin and Depression: A Disconnect between the Advertisements and the Scientific Literature. Jeffrey R. Lacasse, Jonathan Leo The article is a definitely a must read for those interested in direct-to-consumer advertising (DTCA) issues. However,for those who don’t have enough…

Serotonin syndrome

Serotonin syndrome is a predictable clinical feature that involves excess serotonergic agonism of central nervous system (CNS) receptors and peripheral serotonergic receptors. The following PowerPoint was published on Stanford School of Medicine’s Scalpel: Serotoninn syndrome features Download: Serotonin syndrome PPT file MedExcel posted recently a mnemonic to remember the clinical components of serotonin syndrome Causes HARM:…

Duloxetine (Cymbalta, Yentreve): a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor for major depression. Australian prescriber review

From Australian Prescriber: Duloxetine Cymbalta (Eli Lilly) 30 mg and 60 mg capsules Approved indication: major depression Australian Medicines Handbook section 18.1.2 Duloxetine is a new antidepressant which selectively inhibits serotonin and noradrenaline reuptake. It also weakly inhibits dopamine uptake. (See details of its mechanism of action)Continue Reading

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