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A 6-week, multicentre, randomized controlled clinical trial to evaluate the safety and efficacy of placeboxetine hydrochloride in the treatment of major depressive disorder in an Indian setting

Author(s): Andrade Chittaranjan

Journal: Indian Journal of Psychiatry
ISSN 0019-5545

Volume: 53;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 69;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: India | major depressive disorder | placeboxetine | randomized controlled trial | sertraline

Introduction: This paper describes a fictitious study of a fictitious drug. A companion paper in this issue of the Indian J Psychiatry critically examines this paper and provides author, reader, reviewer, and researcher perspectives on problems related to the design and conduct of a clinical trial; on issues related to the analysis of data; on how to write a research paper; and on how to critically read or review a journal article. Readers are invited to appraise this paper and then compare their assessment with that presented in the companion paper. Background: This study sought to compare the safety and efficacy of placeboxetine (PB) hydrochloride extended release capsules with sertraline hydrochloride in patients diagnosed with major depressive disorder in 15 general hospitals in south India. Materials and Methods: In a prospective, open-label, 15-center, randomized controlled clinical trial, consecutive outpatients diagnosed with major depressive disorder of at least moderate severity were randomized 1:1 to receive flexible doses of either PB or sertraline once each morning. Patients were evaluated every two weeks, until the study endpoint, using the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAM-D) and the Montgomery-Asberg Rating Scale (MADRS). Safety was determined through assessments of vital signs, adverse events, study discontinuation rates, hematological parameters, metabolic parameters, electrocardiography, and other measures. Results: Ten patients dropped out of the study from each treatment arm. There was a significant, marked improvement in HAM-D and MADRS scores in each group by the treatment endpoint. There was no significant difference between PB and sertraline groups on either HAM-D or MADRS at any visit. The response rate was 90% with PB and 92% with sertraline. The remission rate was 70% with PB and 75% with sertraline. All laboratory parameters were within normal limits in all patients. There were no serious adverse events. Conclusions: Placeboxetine is as safe and effective as sertraline in Indian patients with major depressive disorder.
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