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Drugs of the Future
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Drugs Fut 2007, 32(5): 457
ISSN 0377-8282
e-ISSN 2013-0368
Copyright 2007 Clarivate
CCC: 0377-8282
DOI: 10.1358/dof.2007.032.05.1087934
 
 
Seasonal affective disorder
McIntyre, J.A., Moral, M.A.
 
 
Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a mood disorder characterized by recurrent episodes of major depression most frequently occurring during the winter months. A dysfunction in the serotonergic system has been implicated in the pathophysiology of SAD, together with an abnormal delay of circadian rhythms in winter. Therapy with bright light has been shown to be an effective treatment for SAD, although as many as 50% of individuals with SAD do not demonstrate clinically significant improvement with light treatment. There is some evidence that augmentation with cognitive-behavioral therapy or pharmacotherapy may improve responses or reduce subsequent relapse rates. The noradrenaline and dopamine reuptake inhibitor bupropion is the only drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the prevention of seasonal major depressive episodes. In terms of other pharmacotherapy for the treatment or prevention of SAD, very few randomized, controlled studies have been conducted. However, studies evaluating the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) sertraline and fluoxetine have demonstrated their efficacy in the treatment of this disorder.


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