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March 2002

Out of the Box

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2002;59(3):281. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.59.3.281

MODERN psychopharmacology is about a half century old. The drugs it has spawned have saved and restored lives. But the agents we currently use are far from perfect. We probe ill-defined disorders with empirical pharmacologic trials. Too often, complex medication regimens are thrown at poorly responsive clinical problems, with insufficient justification. Adverse effects can be burdensome and serious. Real-world compliance falls far short of accepted guidelines and international consensus.