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J Clin Psychiatry. 2009 Jun;70(6):915-8. doi: 10.4088/JCP.08m04828. Epub 2009 May 5.

Effect of a serotonin reuptake inhibitor on irritability, apathy, and psychotic symptoms in patients with Alzheimer's disease.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX 75390-9129, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To ascertain the impact of treatment with citalopram on irritability, apathy, delusions, and hallucinations in nondepressed behaviorally disturbed Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients.

METHOD:

This was a retrospective analysis of data from the 36-week Clinical Antipsychotic Trials of Intervention Effectiveness in Alzheimer's Disease in which patients with probable AD (diagnosed according to criteria of the National Institute of Neurological and Communicative Disorders and Stroke and Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Association [NINCDS/ADRDA]) were treated in a naturalistic manner. Scores were compared on the irritability, apathy, delusions, and hallucinations subscales of the Neuropsychiatric Inventory. The trial was conducted between April 2001 and November 2004.

RESULTS:

Of the 421 patients enrolled, 44 were started on placebo and were later randomly assigned to citalopram treatment. There were data available for 34 subjects who took placebo for at least 14 days. In this group, there was a 60% reduction in irritability and apathy scores, no effect on scores for delusions, and a clinically insignificant drop in scores for hallucinations.

CONCLUSIONS:

The use of citalopram was associated with greatly reduced irritability without sedation in a group of behaviorally disturbed patients with AD.

Copyright 2009 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.

PMID:
19422762
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3236068
Free PMC Article
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