Safety and efficacy of escitalopram in the long-term treatment of generalized anxiety disorder.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

INTRODUCTION: Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is a chronic disorder that requires long-term treatment. Escitalopram has previously been shown to be effective and well tolerated in the acute treatment of GAD. METHOD: Three 8-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials of nearly identical design were conducted of escitalopram in moderate-to-severe GAD (DSM-IV criteria). Patients completing these trials were given the option of entering a 24-week, open-label, flexible-dose trial of escitalopram (10-20 mg/day). Data were collected from September 20, 2000, to August 15, 2002. RESULTS: Two hundred ninety-nine (56.8%) of 526 patients completed 24 weeks of open-label treatment. The mean Hamilton Rating Scale for Anxiety (HAM-A) score at baseline of open-label treatment was 13.1. Long-term escitalopram treatment led to continuing improvement on all anxiety and quality-of-life (QOL) scores. Of those completing 24 weeks of treatment, 92.0% were responders (Clinical Global Impressions-Improvement scale score < or = 2), and the mean HAM-A score in the completed analysis was 6.9; using the last observation carried forward (LOCF), 75.9% were responders, and the mean HAM-A score in the LOCF analysis was 9.2 at endpoint. Insufficient therapeutic response and adverse events led to withdrawal of 4.2% and 9.9% of patients, respectively. Mean increase in weight from baseline was 3.0 lb. No clinically notable changes in mean laboratory, vital sign, or electrocardiographic values were observed. CONCLUSION: These results support the long-term tolerability and effectiveness of escitalopram in the treatment of GAD.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Davidson, JRT; Bose, A; Wang, Q

Published Date

  • November 2005

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 66 / 11

Start / End Page

  • 1441 - 1446

PubMed ID

  • 16420082

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0160-6689

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.4088/jcp.v66n1115


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States