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Drugs. 1986 Oct;32(4):313-34.

Fluvoxamine. A review of its pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic properties, and therapeutic efficacy in depressive illness.


Fluvoxamine is a new antidepressant which potently and specifically inhibits neuronal reuptake of serotonin. In the absence of other major pharmacological effects it appears that its antidepressant activity stems from facilitation of serotoninergic neurotransmission as a result of reuptake inhibition. Studies suggest that fluvoxamine has overall therapeutic efficacy comparable with that of imipramine and clomipramine in depressive illness. It causes fewer anticholinergic-type and cardiovascular side effects than the tricyclic antidepressants but it is associated with a higher incidence of nausea and vomiting. Elderly patients also respond well to fluvoxamine. Studies are now required to compare fluvoxamine with other second generation antidepressants and to establish whether some types of depressive illness respond more readily to fluvoxamine than other agents. Thus, in patients with depressive illness, fluvoxamine offers a suitable alternative to tricyclic antidepressants and may be especially valuable in patients with concomitant cardiovascular disease, and those unresponsive to or unable to tolerate tricyclic antidepressants.

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