To the Editor.
—The risk of depressive symptoms during treatment with neuroleptics has been discussed but few controlled studies exist. There are also different types of depressive phenomena occurring in schizophrenic illness,1 but systematic observations based on controlled patient populations are needed. Knights and Hirsch recently published a study comparing schizophrenic patients treated with neuroleptic drugs with those who were not.2 It was obvious from their findings that depressive symptoms occurred considerably more often during placebo treatment than during neuroleptic therapy. I studied the effects of withdrawal from long-acting neuroleptic treatment in schizophrenic outpatients. Patients, methods, and other results have been described in detail in a previous report.3 In this study, 41 schizophrenic outpatients agreed to take part in a double-blind randomized investigation comparing the use of a placebo with the continued use of long-acting neuroleptics (fluphenazine decanoate or flupentixol decanoate). For the nonrelapsers in the placebo group and in the
Wistedt B. Neuroleptics and Depression. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1982;39(6):745. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1982.04290060085019