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Asian J Psychiatr. 2013 Apr;6(2):157-61. doi: 10.1016/j.ajp.2012.10.004. Epub 2012 Nov 17.

Paroxetine in the treatment of dysthymic disorder without co-morbidities: A double-blind, placebo-controlled, flexible-dose study.

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Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, 100 Stokes St., Toronto, ON M6J 1H4, Canada.


Few published studies have evaluated selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors in dysthymia without current co-morbid major depression. In this 12-week study, 40 dysthymic patients were randomly assigned to either placebo (n=19) or 20-40 mg/day of paroxetine (n=21). At endpoint, the paroxetine group showed significantly greater improvement on the Clinical Global Impression Scale, Beck Depression Inventory, and Quality of Life Enjoyment and Satisfaction Questionnaire (p<0.05), and a trend to superiority over placebo on the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale. Response and remission were significantly higher with paroxetine than placebo (p<0.05). There were no significant differences in drop out rates or frequency of adverse effects, except for excessive sweating (greater with paroxetine, p=0.04). Reporting of multiple side effects was also higher with paroxetine than with placebo (p=0.02). Paroxetine is more effective than placebo in improving symptoms and quality of life in dysthymia, and is generally tolerable.

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