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Hear Res. 2007 Apr;226(1-2):221-31. Epub 2006 Sep 14.

Antidepressant therapy in tinnitus.

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Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, Veterans Administration San Diego Healthcare System, 3350 La Jolla Village Dr., Mail Code 116A, La Jolla, CA 92161, USA.


Review the literature on the co-morbidity of depression and anxiety with tinnitus. Briefly consider proposed mechanisms by which antidepressants might be helpful for tinnitus, including treatment of co-morbid depression and anxiety and a more direct serotonergic mechanism of tinnitus. Survey the literature on antidepressants and tinnitus including tinnitus reported as a side effect of antidepressants (phenelzine, amitriptyline, protriptyline, doxepin, imipramine, fluoxetine, trazadone, bupropion, venlafaxine), tinnitus associated with withdrawal of antidepressants (venlafaxine and sertraline) and antidepressants as a treatment for tinnitus (case reports--fluoxetine and paroxetine, retrospective reviews--imipramine and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, single blind trials of amitriptyline and double blind placebo controlled trials of trimipramine, nortriptyline, paroxetine and sertraline). Provide suggestions on future directions, specifically replication of prior studies and a dose finding study of paroxetine for the treatment of tinnitus.

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