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J Affect Disord. 2005 Sep;88(1):75-8.

Partial sleep deprivation therapy combined with sertraline induces more rapid improvements in quality of life items in major depressive disorder.

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Psychiatry Department, Trakya University, School of Medicine, Edirne 22030, Turkey.



Total or partial sleep deprivation was showed to have rapid antidepressive effects in depression. Sleep deprivation therapy in major depression constitutes insufficient antidepressive treatment response and depressive symptoms reoccur after one night of recovery. Combination of antidepressant medication with sleep deprivation therapy is generally indicated. These combination therapies were found more favorable overall therapeutic effect than antidepressive monotherapy.


In this study, we examined the Quality of Life changes with the antidepressive therapy using partial sleep deprivation plus sertraline and sertraline monotherapy in patients with major depressive disorder. Thirteen patients received six partial sleep deprivation therapies in addition to sertraline, that sleep schedule in deprivation nights started at 11:00-12:00 p.m. to 03:00 a.m. and 11 patients treated with sertraline monotherapy as a control group. Quality of Life was evaluated with the WHOQOL-100, depression and the accompanying anxiety were also assessed at baseline and at the end of the 4th week.


Patients treated with combination therapy improved significantly and more rapidly. Rapid improvement in quality of life in major depressive disorder was showed in patients treated with combination of late partial sleep deprivation and sertraline.


Small sample size, the lack of placebo group and short duration of the study are the main limitations.


In clinical practice, QOL improvement can be accelerated using combination of partial sleep deprivation with the sertraline therapy.

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