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Re: Pharmacological Inteverntions for Dysthymia

Posted by Sean on May 24, 1999, at 17:15:52

In reply to Pharmacological Inteverntions for Dysthymia, posted by Holliday on May 24, 1999, at 15:09:59

> Are the pharmacological interventions for dysthymia
> the same as or similar to that for major depression? I
> can imagine that ECT would not be indicated for dysthymia,
> whereas it might be life-saving for someone with in a
> major depressive episode. Analagously, I would not be surprised
> to learn that some medicines that would be readily used for
> major depression might not be indicated on a cost/benefit basis
> for dysthymia, but I have seen little, if anything, in print on
> the subject.
> I DID read from David Burns, M.D., that MAO inhibitors might
> be more efficacious for dysthymia than TCAs or SSRIs used either
> alone or in combination. I am not aware of any follow-up studies
> supporting this, though.
> Any help from the M.D.s out there?

I'm not a doc, but I've read widely on dysthymia
after years of personal experience with cyclothymia,
panic, and depression.

The best doctor I can refer you to is Hagop Akiskal.
He has been working on the medication issues around
dysthymia for many years. It is his opinion that
dysthymia is physiologicaly related to the bipolar
disorders and tends to respond better to drugs
usually reserved for modd stabilization or
treating the depressed phase of bipolar disorder
(e.g., Lithium, depakote, MAOI's, etc...) Not
everyone agrees with this opinion, but certainly
he has done numerous studies to back up his claims.

I could ramble on for hours about his work, but
suffice to say it is very well respected and at the
cutting edge of nosology (how diseases are classified).
You can find many of his papers on the net via

Good luck!





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