Special Report: Help for the blues

November 17, 2003

Inadequate treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD), a common condition, is a serious concern. According to study findings published recently in Journal of the American Medical Association, 16.2% of the U.S. adult population will experience major depression at some point in their life, and 6.6% have had an episode of major depression within the last year. Although 51.6% of those who have experienced major depression within the last year received treatment, the therapeutic regimen was effective in only 41.9% of cases. New drugs currently under FDA review for the treatment of depression, such as the potent serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) duloxetine (Cymbalta, Eli Lilly), may help clinicians address this significant public health issue.