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The results implicate that the sleep-improving effects of doxepin are mediated at least in part by a normalization of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis functions. Although in some patients rebound insomnia and specific side effects must be considered, our findings give a further rationale for the use of antidepressants in the treatment of primary insomnia.
Oral bepotastine (10 mg), with its relatively low H(1)RO and thus minimal sedation, has the potential for use as a mildly or slightly sedative antihistamine in the treatment of various allergic disorders.
Psychotropic medications are an important treatment approach to mental health disorders; such disorders are common in the elderly population. Elderly patients are more likely to experience adverse effects from these agents than their younger counterparts due to age-related changes in pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic parameters. Because of these factors, inappropriate use of psychotropic medications in elderly patients has become a focus of concern. In general an agent is considered inappropriate if the risk associated with its use exceeds its benefit. Implicit and explicit criteria for inappropriate use of medications in the elderly have been created and include psychotropic agents. These criteria vary in their make-up but the explicit criteria tend to agree that amitriptyline, doxepin, and benzodiazepines that have long half-lives are not appropriate. Although explicit inappropriate medication criteria have been in existence since 1991, elderly patients continue to receive inappropriate psychotropic medications. A wide array of factors may be responsible for this practice. Provider-related causes include deficits in knowledge, confusion due to the lack of a consensus on the inappropriate psychotropic criteria, difficulties in addressing an inappropriate medication started by a previous provider, multiple prescribers and pharmacies involved in the care of a patient, negative perceptions regarding aging, and cost issues. Patients may contribute to the problem by demanding an inappropriate medication. Finally, the healthcare setting may inadvertently contribute to inappropriate prescribing by such policies as restrictive formularies or lack of reimbursement for pharmacists' clinical services. Successful approaches to optimising prescribing have been either educational or administrative. Educational approaches (e.g. one-on-one sessions, academic detailing) seek to influence decision making, while administrative approaches attempt to enforce policies to curtail the undesired practice. The US Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1987, which improved psychotropic medication use in long-term care, is an excellent example of administrative intervention. More research specifically focused on the causes of inappropriate psychotropic medication use and methods to avoid this practice is needed before targeted recommendations can be made.
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The sensitivity and selectivity of a colloidal metal immunoassay device (Triage Plus TCA) which is designed for the rapid detection of tricyclic antidepressant drugs in urine at a total tricyclic antidepressant concentration of 1000 ng/mL or greater were evaluated.
A 1-week single-blind placebo period followed by a 5-week randomized double-blind parallel group clinical trial.
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The antidepressants bupropion and nortriptyline aid long term smoking cessation but selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (e.g. fluoxetine) do not. The fact that only some forms of antidepressants aid cessation and that they do so regardless of depressive symptoms strongly suggests that their mode of action is independent of their antidepressant effect.
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Chronic urticaria is a cutaneous condition in which recurrent pruritic wheals (hives) manifest on the body and typically last for longer than 6 weeks. Chronic urticaria, including physically induced urticarias, such as cold, solar exposure or delayed pressure urticaria, is estimated to occur in approximately 25% of urticaria patients. Of these patients, 75% present with idiopathic disease, which is essentially an exclusionary diagnosis when no contributing factors can be determined that cause the cutaneous reaction. Chronic urticaria symptoms can have a profound effect on a patient's quality of life (QoL); therefore, treatment should address both physical symptom relief and improvements in QoL. This review will discuss the benefits and limitations of several treatment options available to relieve urticarial symptoms, including H1- and H2-receptor antagonists, doxepin, antileukotriene therapy and corticosteroids. Other experimental therapies, such as immunomodulatory agents, plasmapheresis treatment, i.v. immunoglobulins, and omalizumab will also be discussed.
Plasma levels of doxepin and its metabolite desmethyldoxepin were determined in 7 depressed patients treated with doxepin hydrochloride in 3 divided doses at 1000, 1600, and 2200 hours (t.i.d.), and repeated after changing the dosage schedule to a single daily bedtime (h.s.) dose at 2200 hours. Doxepin and its metabolite were measured at 9000, 1200, 1500, and 1800 hours. None of the individual patients showed clinically significant changes in their plasma concentration of tricyclic antidepressant on the 2 dosage schedules. No difference in the clinical condition of the patients was detected on the 2 dosage schedules using the Zung Self Rating Depression Scale, however patients experienced more morning sedation while on the single h.s. dosage. This study provides pharmacological support for the prescription of doxepin on a once daily basis.
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Over the 18 month period the total patient population covered by HAP was 287,456; 20,014 (7%) patients received one or more prescriptions for insomnia. Of these, anxiolytics were most frequently prescribed (55%), then antidepressants (25%), and hypnotics least frequently (20%). Patients receiving hypnotics were more likely to be male, older, and to receive a narrower dose range, in smaller quantities and with fewer refills than patients receiving anxiolytics or antidepressants.
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Clovoxamine, an inhibitor of neuronal uptake of both serotin and noradrenaline, was compared with doxepin in depressed patients over four weeks. Antidepressant efficacy was comparable for both drugs, but clovoxamine might have a special degree of efficacy for patients with more severe depressive illnesses.
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Chronic itch accompanying many dermatological, neurological, and systemic diseases is unresponsive to antihistamines. Our knowledge of endogenous chemicals that evoke histamine-independent itch and their molecular targets is very limited. Recently it was demonstrated in behavioral and cellular experiments that bovine adrenal medulla 8-22 peptide (BAM8-22), a proteolytically cleaved product of proenkephalin A, is a potent activator of Mas-related G-protein-coupled receptors (Mrgprs), MrgprC11 and hMrgprX1, and induces scratching in mice in an Mrgpr-dependent manner. To study the sensory qualities that BAM8-22 evokes in humans, we tested the volar forearm of 15 healthy volunteers with heat-inactivated cowhage spicules previously soaked in the peptide. BAM8-22 produced itch in each subject, usually accompanied by sensations of pricking/stinging and burning. The sensations were occasionally accompanied by one or more mechanically evoked dysesthesias, namely alloknesis, hyperknesis, and/or hyperalgesia, but no wheal or neurogenic flare in the skin surrounding the application site. The inactive truncated peptide BAM8-18 produced weak or no sensations. Pretreatment of the tested skin with an antihistamine cream (doxepin) inhibited histamine-induced sensations, dysesthesias, and skin reactions but not the sensations and dysesthesias evoked by BAM8-22. We show that BAM8-22 produces itch and nociceptive sensations in humans in a histamine-independent manner. Thus, BAM8-22 may be an endogenous itch mediator that activates, in humans, MrgprX1, a novel target for potential anti-itch treatments.
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The antidepressants bupropion and nortriptyline aid long-term smoking cessation but selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (e.g. fluoxetine) do not. Evidence suggests that the mode of action of bupropion and nortriptyline is independent of their antidepressant effect and that they are of similar efficacy to nicotine replacement. Adverse events with both medications are rarely serious or lead to stopping medication.
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Overdose admissions (patients) in relation to prescribing in Edinburgh and poisons inquiries in relation to prescription rates in Scotland.
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A two-step, randomized, intraindividual parallel-comparative, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial was conducted on the volar side of the forearm. Step 1 was aimed to determine the onset, while step 2 determined the duration of action. The topical AH tested was a single application of 5% doxepin hydrochloride cream, while 10 mg/ml histamine dihydrochloride was used to test the skin responses.
The authors review four "second generation" antidepressants (maprotiline, amoxapine, trazodone, and nomifensine) in terms of action on biogenic amines and receptors, antidepressive efficacy, and adverse effects. Doxepin is used as a comparative agent and is similar to the prototypical tricyclic agents in all the above categories. Maprotiline is a selective noradrenergic agent, but shares a similar adverse effect profile with doxepin and may be associated with a high frequency of seizures in overdose. Amoxapine is a mixed action antidepressant with significant neuroleptic activity in vivo. Its adverse effect profile is highlighted by symptoms related to its neuroleptic activity, and seizures and acute renal failure in overdose. Trazodone is a selective serotonergic agent with low anticholinergic activity, and minimal morbidity/mortality in overdose. Reports of priapism, leading to impotence in some men, however, is of concern. Nomifensine is a potent noradrenergic and dopaminergic agent with low anticholinergic activity, and minimum cardiotoxicity and low morbidity/mortality in overdose. Its most important adverse effects include overstimulation and infrequent, usually reversible, immunologic hypersensitivity reactions. Trazodone and nomifensine have favorable profiles for use in the elderly. Trazodone may be more favorable in the anxious/agitated patient due to its sedative effects, whereas nomifensine may be more beneficial in the retarded, apathetic patient.
The activity of the centrally acting analgesic, propoxyphene, either alone or combined with the tricyclic antidepressant, doxepin, has been studied. Doses of doxepin, in themselves lacking any analgesic effect, remarkably enhanced the analgesic activity of propoxyphene, either by the oral or intraperitoneal route. On the other hand, oral toxicity data prove that doxepin does not alter significantly propoxyphene acute toxicity.
Several factors correlate with the risk of suicide in people taking antidepressants. After controlling for these factors, the risk of suicide was similar among the 10 study antidepressants. Overdose with antidepressants accounted for only 14% of the suicides.
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The mean binding potential of all five regions of interest (total binding potential) was significantly greater with bilastine than hydroxyzine (mean value 0.26 vs. 0.13, P < 0.01; mean difference and 95% CI -0.130 [-0.155, 0.105]). There was no significant difference between bilastine and placebo. Overall H1 RO by bilastine was significantly lower than that by hydroxyzine (mean value -3.92% vs. 53.95%, P < 0.01; mean difference and 95% CI 57.870% [42.664%, 73.075%]). There was no significant linear relationship between individual bilastine plasma concentrations and total binding potential values. No significant between-treatment differences were observed for sedation and psychomotor performance. Twenty-six non-serious AEs were reported. Sleepiness or sedation was not reported with bilastine but appeared in some subjects with hydroxyzine.
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Certain tricyclic drugs, some of which are primarily used clinically as antidepressants, have been shown to act as gastric antisecretory agents. The anatomical site(s) and mechanism(s) of action of these agents is, however, in most cases unclear. In this study, we found that desmethylimipramine (DMI) was approximately 28 times more potent in inhibiting gastric acid secretion when administered intracerebroventricularly (i.c.) than when administered intravenously (i.v.) in pylorus-ligated rats, which is indicative of a site of action in the central nervous system. Qualitatively similar results were obtained with pirenzepine where the i.c./i.v. potency ratio was 8. Doxepin also preferentially inhibited acid secretion when given i.c. at low but not at high doses. Atropine and chlorpromazine were equipotent antisecretory agents by both routes of administration. Doxepin and DMI but not pirenzepine were effective inhibitors of brain stem norepinephrine uptake in vitro thus making this an unlikely common mechanism to explain the central actions of these compounds.
It was demonstrated that the brain penetration of orally administered cetirizine was dose-dependent. Cetirizine 10 mg, with its low H(1)RO and thus minimal sedation, could be more safely used than cetirizine 20 mg for the treatment of various allergic disorders.
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Tricyclic antidepressants are commonly employed orally to treat major depressive disorders and have been shown to be of substantial benefit in various chronic pain conditions. Among other properties they are potent Na+ channel blockers in vitro and show local anaesthetic properties in vivo. The present study aimed to determine their differential neurotoxicity, and that of novel derivatives as prerequisite for their potential use in regional anaesthesia.
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Nicotine dependence and the role of various pharmacotherapeutic adjuncts in the medical management of nicotine withdrawal and smoking cessation are reviewed. Nicotine has been shown to be the drug in tobacco that causes addiction. The nicotine withdrawal syndrome is primarily characterized by craving, irritability, frustration, anger, anxiety, poor concentration, restlessness, weight gain, and decreased heart rate. Pharmacotherapeutic interventions can be classified into four groups: therapy that (1) replaces nicotine, (2) antagonizes nicotine, (3) provides symptomatic treatment for nicotine withdrawal, and (4) deters smoking. Nicotine replacement therapy with nicotine polacrilex gum has had minimal effect on increasing-smoking cessation among patients seen in a general medical practice setting. It is most effective in nicotine dependent smokers when it is used concomitantly with behavioral or psychological counseling. Nicotine antagonist therapy with mecamylamine may be useful in recalcitrant cases of nicotine dependence. Clonidine, in both oral and transdermal forms, has been shown to be effective for reduction of symptoms and craving associated with smoking cessation. Research on using the tricyclic antidepressants imipramine and doxepin to promote smoking cessation by reducing withdrawal symptoms is in its preliminary phases. Lobeline, an alkaloid with effects similar to those of nicotine, is an FDA Category III drug (i.e., safe, but of unknown efficacy) and is available without prescription. Silver acetate chewing gum deters smoking by producing an unpleasant metallic taste on concomitant ingestion of the agent and tobacco. It is an FDA Category III drug and is available without prescription. Drugs used in therapy of nicotine withdrawal include nicotine replacements, nicotine antagonists, agents to lessen the symptoms of withdrawal, and smoking deterrents. None of the drugs is completely effective. Successful drug use for smoking cessation involves consideration of the psychological, as well as physiological, aspects of nicotine addiction.
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This review article addresses some of the complex issues surrounding antidepressant drug usage among elderly depressives. While primarily geared toward the psychiatrist in general practice, the article provides useful information for the nonpsychiatric physician who is frequently called upon to evaluate and treat affective disorders in the geriatric population. Since tricyclic antidepressants and lithium are the most commonly used psychotropic drugs in the treatment of depression, their side effects and adverse reactions are discussed specifically as these relate to the elderly. Suggestions are offered on how to improve safety and enhance compliance. Brief mention is made of the monoamine oxidase inhibitors and the second generation antidepressants. Dose ranges are recommended for use of these agents in geriatric patients. Finally, a section of the article reviews the most commonly encountered encountered drug interactions between tricyclic and a variety of other psychotropic and nonpsychotropic drugs.
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The pharmacological effects of three tricyclic antidepressant agents (desipramine, protriptyline and doxepin) are evaluated in rat isolated atria in relation to their accumulation and efflux kinetics. The pharmacological effects studed are: inhibition of 1-3H-noradrenaline uptake, potentiation of 1-noradrenaline chronotropic response, and changes in spontaneous atrial rate. All drugs inhibit noradrenaline uptake and potentiate noradrenaline chronotropic response (desipramine congruent to protriptyline greater than doxepin). Desipramine and protriptyline, at concentrations of 10(-7) -- 10(-6)M stimulate the spontaneous rate; higher concentrations (greater than 10(-6)M) depress it. Doxepin has only a negative chronotropic effect. When the drugs are removed from the incubation medium, the depressing effect starts to disappear immediately for doxepin and desipramine and after 20 min for protriptyline. On the contrary the stimulating effect persists after repeatedly washing the preparations. Desipramine, protriptyline and doxepin extensively accumulate in the myocardial tissue (desipramine larger than or equal to protriptyline greater than doxepin). In the efflux studies doxepin is washed out more rapidly than desipramine and protriptyline. Although the kinetics of uptake and efflux of the three compounds are not sufficient to interpret their different pharmacological activities in isolated atria, they give useful information on the persistance of the sympathomimetic effect and the rapid disappearing of the negative chronotropic effect after washing.
Mirtazapine is a novel antidepressant with a unique mode of action, which can be best summarized as a noradrenaline and specific serotonin antidepressant. Its unique mode of action, involving both the noradrenergic and serotonergic neurotransmitter systems, results in strong clinical efficacy. A comprehensive clinical trial programme in Europe and the United States has demonstrated that mirtazapine has clear clinical benefits in a broad range of patients treated across different therapeutic settings. The individual placebo-controlled trials and a meta-analysis on pooled efficacy data from all available placebo-controlled studies have shown that mirtazapine has sustained antidepressant efficacy, as assessed by changes from baseline in group mean scores on the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAMD) and in the depressed mood item, from week 1 throughout the whole study period. Corroborative evidence on the clinical efficacy of mirtazapine has been obtained in comparative studies with antidepressant drugs of well established efficacy, such as amitriptyline, clomipramine, doxepin and trazodone. As with the placebo-controlled studies, a meta-analysis was performed on data from all the randomized, double-blind, comparative studies of mirtazapine and amitriptyline. Data from 732 patients were available (364 patients taking mirtazapine and 368 taking amitriptyline) for efficacy analysis. Equivalent improvements in total 17-item HAMD scores from baseline were observed in both treatment groups at all scheduled assessments and at the end of the study period, and similarly high percentages of patients responded to treatment with either mirtazapine (70%) or amitriptyline (73%). The efficacy of mirtazapine was also assessed in the treatment of moderately (baseline 17-item HAMD score 18-24) or severely depressed patients (baseline 17-item HAMD score > or = 25). A meta-analysis was performed on the pooled data from the moderately or severely depressed patients in the comparative studies of mirtazapine and placebo or mirtazapine and amitriptyline. Statistically and clinically significant improvements from baseline were seen in both moderately and severely depressed patients treated with mirtazapine compared with placebo, while an equivalent extent of improvement was present with mirtazapine and amitriptyline. A similar pattern was observed in the improvement of depressed mood (HAMD item 1) and other clinically important symptoms of depression: mirtazapine was significantly more efficacious than placebo, and of equivalent efficacy to amitriptyline. Therefore, it can be concluded that the new antidepressant mirtazapine offers distinct therapeutic benefits for a variety of depressed patients in either in- or outpatient settings.
We included randomised controlled trials comparing pharmacological interventions, at any dose and by any route of administration, for clozapine-induced hypersalivation.
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Insomnia in its chronic form is present in high numbers of patients presenting to physicians. As older women who have medical problems have the highest rates of chronic insomnia, physicians must have a high index of suspicion and be prepared to explore various etiologic factors that might be operative. Treatment should focus on setting specific goals, with patients using strategies that combine lifestyle changes, behavioral interventions, and appropriate medications. OTC agents, sedating antidepressants at low dosages (trazodone, doxepin, amitriptyline, and others), and nonhypnotic benzodiazepines are insufficiently studied to provide evidence-based support for their use to treat chronic insomnia. Particularly in the elderly, close monitoring is needed to prevent falls, accidents, and cognitive impairment from these agents. FDA-labeled hypnotic agents are efficacious, but long-term studies have not been available until the recent release of eszopiclone in the United States. Recent work encourages the use of CBT even in patients who have used sleeping pills for several years, although the success of CBT has been less encouraging when applied to chronic insomnia sufferers who have concurrent psychiatric disorders and who have taken hypnotics for years.