Antidepressant Vilazodone Shows Efficacy As Anxiety Treatment

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A relatively new antidepressant that is a combination of a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) and a 5-HT1A receptor agonist has also demonstrated efficacy in treating anxiety in people with generalized anxiety disorder.

A double-blind, 10-week trial randomized a total of 404 people to receive either vilazodone (Viibryd), which was approved in 2011 and is indicated for treatment of major depressive disorder, or placebo. The study was comprised of a one-week screening period, followed by eight weeks of treatment, and then one week of tapering off.

Patients who received vilazodone were given between 20 and 40 mg per day. The primary outcome was change in score on the Hamilton Rating Scale for Anxiety (HAMA) from baseline to the eighth week. A secondary measure was the change in the Sheehan Disability Scale (SDS).

After eight weeks, patients in the vilazodone group reported less worrying and a decline in anxiety symptoms compared to those on placebo, David Sheehan, MD, professor emeritus at the University of South Florida College of Medicine, Tampa, told Medscape Medical News. The data was presented at the American Society of Clinical Psychopharmacology Annual Meeting in Miami.

Statistically significant differences in favor of vilazodone at week 8 were also seen on the SDS domain score, the HAMA Psychic and Somatic Anxiety subscales, as well as on HAMA Anxious Mood and Tension measures.

Antidepressant Vilazodone Shows Efficacy As Anxiety Treatment
Generalized anxiety disorder patients who took the antidepressant vilazodone (Viibryd) reported a significant decline in anxiety symptoms.

MIAMI — The selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) and 5-HT1A receptor partial agonist vilazodone (Viibryd, Forest Laboratories, Inc), currently approved for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD) in adults, is also effective in relieving anxiety symptoms in patients with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).

The finding, from a double-blind, randomized clinical trial, was presented here at the American Society of Clinical Psychopharmacology (ASCP) 2015 Annual Meeting.

The multicenter study compared vilazodone 20-40 mg/day vs placebo in patients aged 18 to 70 years who had GAD.

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