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Ann Clin Psychiatry. 2000 Sep;12(3):137-40.

Pramipexole augmentation in the treatment of unipolar and bipolar depression: a retrospective chart review.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital, USA. spornj@intra.NIMH.NIH.GOV



To assess the effectiveness and safety of pramipexole as an adjunctive medication in refractory bipolar and unipolar depression in a naturalistic setting.


Retrospective chart review by psychiatrists on staff at a university hospital identified all patients who had received pramipexole. Response was based on moderate to marked improvement in the Clinical Global Impression-Improvement (CGI-I) scale.


Pramipexole (mean dose 0.70 mg/d, mean duration 24.4 weeks) was effective in 6/12 (50.0%) of patients with bipolar depression, and 8/20 (40%) of patients with unipolar depression, mean duration of follow-up of 24.4 weeks. One case of transient hypomania was noted. Eight patients discontinued pramipexole due to lack of response and four due to side effects.


Pramipexole, used as an adjunct to antidepressants or mood stabilizers, appeared to be effective and safe in the treatment of unipolar and bipolar depression. These uncontrolled, retrospective, naturalistic pilot data require confirmation by controlled research before conclusions can be made.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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