Augmentation and combination strategies for depression.

Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University Medical Center, Stanford, CA 94305, USA.
Journal of Psychopharmacology (Impact Factor: 2.81). 06/2006; 20(3 Suppl):11-8. DOI: 10.1177/1359786806064310
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Treatment-resistant depression represents a common problem, with the vast majority of depressed patients showing incomplete response to antidepressant trials. Augmentation and combination strategies are commonly employed to address this problem, but there are few randomized, controlled studies to guide treatment choice. Indeed, some of the most common augmentation strategies in depression are those with the least controlled evidence. The popularity of bupropion, psychostimulants and atypical antipsychotics as augmentors may not be warranted by existing controlled studies, whereas two less commonly used augmentors-lithium and thyroid hormone- have substantial controlled evidence to support their use. This paper summarizes the state of the evidence for commonly used augmenting strategies and explores preliminary findings for more investigational approaches.

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