|July 5, 2004 10:22:05 AM PDT , Reuters|
|Treatment with the antidepressant Cilexa significantly reduces symptoms of major depression in children and adolescents, researchers report.
Dr. Karen Dineen Wagner of the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, and colleagues note in the American Journal of Psychiatry that previous open-label trials have indicated that Cilexa (also known technically as citalopram) was safe and effective in young patients.
To investigate further, the researchers conducted an 8-week long double-blind study of 174 patients, ranging in age from 12 to 17, with major depressive disorder.
They were randomly assigned to treatment with citalopram or an inactive placebo. Patients in the citalopram group showed a significantly greater reduction in average scores on the Children's Depression Rating Scale than did those in the placebo group.
Differences between the citalopram and placebo groups were seen after one week, and continued until the end of the study. At that point, the 36 percent response rate among participants given citalopram was significantly greater than the 24 percent seen in those given a placebo.
The rate of adverse events was similar between the groups, and none was serious, Wagner's team found.
These findings, the researchers conclude, "Further support the use of citalopram in children and adolescents suffering from depression."
SOURCE: American Journal of Psychiatry, June 2004.
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