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J Anxiety Disord. 2009 Apr;23(3):362-8. doi: 10.1016/j.janxdis.2008.12.004. Epub 2008 Dec 24.

Effect of quetiapine vs. placebo on response to two virtual public speaking exposures in individuals with social phobia.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of Minnesota, USA.



Clinical practice and open-label studies suggest that quetiapine (an atypical anti-psychotic) might improve symptoms for individuals with social anxiety disorder (SAD). The purpose of this study was to provide a rigorous test of the acute impact of a single dose of quetiapine (25mg) on SAD symptoms.


Individuals with SAD (N=20) were exposed to a 4-min virtual reality (VR) public speaking challenge after having received quetiapine or placebo (double-blind) 1h earlier. A parallel VR challenge occurred 1 week later using a counter-balanced cross-over (within subject) design for the medication-placebo order between the two sessions.


There was no significant drug effect for quetiapine on the primary outcome measures. However, quetiapine was associated with significantly elevated heart rate and sleepiness compared with placebo.


Study findings suggest that a single dose of 25mg quetiapine is not effective in alleviating SAD symptoms in individuals with fears of public speaking.


[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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