Research News

Large meta-analysis ends doubts about efficacy of antidepressants

BMJ 2018; 360 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.k847 (Published 22 February 2018) Cite this as: BMJ 2018;360:k847
  1. Abi Rimmer
  1. The BMJ

Antidepressants are more effective than placebo for short term treatment of acute depression in adults, a large meta-analysis has found.1

Carmine Pariante, consultant perinatal psychiatrist and a spokesman for the Royal College of Psychiatrists, said that the research would finally put to bed the controversy about antidepressants, as it clearly showed that these drugs work in lifting mood and helping most people with depression.

“Importantly, the paper analyses unpublished data held by pharmaceutical companies and shows that the funding of studies by these companies does not influence the result, thus confirming that the clinical usefulness of these drugs is not affected by pharma sponsored spin,” he said.

Patients with moderate to severe depression—the group covered by the study—are …

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