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J Affect Disord. 1998 May;49(2):109-17.

Light treatment for nonseasonal depression: speed, efficacy, and combined treatment.

Author information

1
Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla 92093-0667, USA. dkripke@ucsd.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Using bright light for treating major depressive disorders which are not seasonal needs reassessment.

METHODS:

Clinical trials of light treatment for nonseasonal major depressive disorders were compared with selected trials of light treatment of winter depression and with antidepressant clinical drug trials.

RESULTS:

Light treatment of nonseasonal depression produces net benefits in the range of 12-35%, often within 1 week.

CONCLUSIONS:

Light's value for nonseasonal and seasonal depression are comparable. Light appears to produce faster antidepressant benefits than psychopharmacologic treatment.

LIMITATIONS:

Direct randomizing comparisons between light and medications for nonseasonal depression are not available.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE:

Bright light can be combined with standard therapies for treating nonseasonal depressions and appears synergistic.

PMID:
9609674
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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