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November 29, 1965

Depressive States: A Pharmacotherapeutic Study

JAMA. 1965;194(9):1026. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090220082041

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The thesis of this volume is that amitriptyline (Elavil) hydrochloride is the drug of choice in the treatment of depressive states. A total of 137 female patients were treated in a double-blind, wellstructured, comprehensive analysis —clinical and statistical—of symptoms and response. Analysis of the tables and of the statements made, however, does not provide conclusive proof of the superiority of this drug.

After the first week of treatment, imipramine hydrochloride (Tofranil) was superior in effectiveness to amitriptyline; after one month's therapy, amitriptyline was superior; after six months follow-up, both drugs reached the finish line at the same time.

In terms of results, amitriptyline showed 84% improvement, and imipramine a 79% improvement in the 137 case studies.

Admitting that electric-shock therapy is simple, safe, and effective, the authors state that the relapse rate of patients treated with electric shock is between 20% and 30%. In the authors' series, the relapse

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