Treatment Of Major Depression

It is often surprising for the student to learn that mood-elevating agents do not act as stimulants of the central nervous system (CNS). With the exception of varying degrees of sedation, the antidepressants have little effect on behavior early in treatment. During this period patients will, however, have side effects specific to the class and agent being used. Only after 2 to 3 weeks of dosing will a therapeutic benefit on depression emerge. At this point the patient begins to demonstrate elevation in mood and self-esteem. In addition, many of the vegetative signs of the illness (e.g., insomnia, anorexia) abate, and the patient regains an interest in daily activities. Failure to continue the medication, however, will result in an immediate relapse into the depressive state. Therefore, maintenance therapy must be continued for at least 6 months.

L TABLE 33.1 Half-Lives of Antidepressant Drugs

Drug (trade name)

Half-life (hr)


Amitriptyline (Elavil)

Beat Depression Now

Beat Depression Now

Let me be up front. My intention is to sell you something. Normally, it's not wise to come out and say that. However, I can do so because I have such an incredible deal for you that you'd be crazy to pass on it.

Get My Free Ebook

Post a comment