Childhood Depression: Pharmacological Therapy/Treatment (Pharmacotherapy of Childhood Depression)

Karen Dineen Wagner, Paul J. Ambrosini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Critiqued the published double-blind, placebo-controlled studies of antidepressant pharmacotherapy in child and adolescent major depressive disorder to assess their overall efficacy. The pharmacological mechanism of antidepressant action also was discussed. At best, antidepressant treatment for depressed youths is only modestly effective. In particular, the tricyclic antidepressants are not superior to placebo; however, early evidence with the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors is more encouraging. The theoretical basis for this response pattern is discussed from a methodological perspective, from a neurodevelopmental status, and from a biological viewpoint. Study modifications are suggested which could improve some of the methodological limitations apparent in previous clinical drug trials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)88-97
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology


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