Efficacy of escitalopram in patients with severe depression: A pooled analysis

Centre Medico-Psychologique B, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire, Clermont-Ferrand, France.
International Journal of Clinical Practice (Impact Factor: 2.57). 04/2005; 59(3):268-75. DOI: 10.1111/j.1742-1241.2005.00440.x
Source: PubMed


Escitalopram is an effective, well-tolerated treatment for major depressive disorder in both primary and specialist settings. This analysis compared the efficacy of escitalopram with citalopram in the treatment of patients with severe depression [defined as a score of > or =30 Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS)]. Data from three clinical trials were used for this pooled analysis. A total of 506 severely depressed patients were included (169 received escitalopram, 171 citalopram and 166 placebo). Mean change from baseline in MADRS total scores (primary efficacy parameter) was significantly higher in the escitalopram-treated group compared with the citalopram-treated group (p = 0.003). There was a significant difference in response between escitalopram and citalopram (56 vs. 41%, respectively, p = 0.007). Results from secondary efficacy parameters (Hamilton rating for depression and Clinical Global Impression of Improvement and Severity scales) were consistent with previous results. The benefits in severe depression of escitalopram vs. citalopram were so demonstrated.

Download full-text


Available from: P.-M. Llorca, Mar 28, 2014
34 Reads
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: There is not an accepted definition of severe depression, but using cut-off scores on rating scales severe depression is considered to lie at one extreme of a continuum of severity. The evidence from epidemiological, biological, and clinical efficacy studies does not support severe depression as a separate illness category. A good response to antidepressants is seen in both moderate and severe depression. The available evidence supports the view that in most cases an effective antidepressant in moderate depression is likely to have efficacy in severe depression. Few studies have found differences between antidepressants in their efficacy in treating severe depression. Most evidence of differential efficacy derives from studies of clomipramine, which is perceived as a particularly potent antidepressant by many clinicians. Other tricyclic antidepressants do not appear to have an advantage in severe depression. Separate studies to demonstrate efficacy in severe depression are not necessary for the registration of a new antidepressant. However if efficacy in severe depression is demonstrated in separate studies this information could be included in the summary of product characteristics to provide guidance to clinicians.
    European Neuropsychopharmacology 04/1999; 9(3):259-64. · 4.37 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Escitalopram is the single isomer responsible for the serotonin reuptake inhibition produced by the racemic antidepressant citalopram. The present randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, fixed-dose multicenter trial was designed to evaluate the efficacy and tolerability of escitalopram in the treatment of major depressive disorder. Outpatients with an ongoing DSM-IV major depressive episode (N = 491) were randomly assigned to placebo, escitalopram, 10 mg/day, escitalopram, 20 mg/day, or citalopram, 40 mg/day, and entered an 8-week double-blind treatment period following a 1-week single-blind placebo lead-in. Clinical response was evaluated by the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS), the 24-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAM-D), the Clinical Global Impressions (CGI) scales, the Hamilton Rating Scale for Anxiety (HAM-A), and patient-rated quality-of-life scales. Escitalopram, at both doses, produced significant improvement at study endpoint relative to placebo on all measures of depression; significant separation of escitalopram from placebo was observed within I week of double-blind treatment. Citalopram treatment also significantly improved depressive symptomatology compared with placebo; however, escitalopram, 10 mg/day, was at least as effective as citalopram, 40 mg/day, at endpoint. Anxiety symptoms and quality of life were also significantly improved by escitalopram compared with placebo. The incidence of discontinuations due to adverse events for the escitalopram 10 mg/day group was not different from the placebo group (4.2% vs. 2.5%; p = .50), and not different for the escitalopram 20 mg/day group and the citalopram 40 mg/day group (10.4% vs. 8.8%; p = .83). Escitalopram, a single isomer SSRI, is well-tolerated and has demonstrated antidepressant efficacy at a dose of 10 mg/day.
    The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 05/2002; 63(4):331-6. DOI:10.4088/JCP.v63n0410 · 5.50 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are recognized as effective as and better tolerated than older antidepressant therapies and have become the drugs of choice in the treatment of mild to moderate depression. However, there is a clinical impression that the SSRIs are less effective than older therapies in the severely depressed patient. A limited number of trials have attempted to address this issue. This review assesses 16 controlled studies of SSRIs in severe depression. The findings from a majority of studies found the SSRIs to be superior to placebo and as effective as but better tolerated than the tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) in severely depressed patients. Although future studies are needed to corroborate and elaborate on these data, studies still support the use of SSRIs in this patient population.
    Depression and Anxiety 01/1996; 4(4):182-9. DOI:10.1002/(SICI)1520-6394(1996)4:4<182::AID-DA4>3.0.CO;2-H · 4.41 Impact Factor
Show more