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Early Onset of Antidepressant Action: Impact on Primary Care

Larry Culpepper, MD

Published: March 1, 2001

Article Abstract

Although the prevalence of depression among patients in primary care is high, the primary care system is inefficient at recognizing and managing this disorder. The delayed onset of antidepressant effect contributes to this problem, since patients and physicians may prematurely discontinue a medication that is not perceived as effective. The undertreatment of depression has profound effects on patients, the health care system, and society. The development of antidepressants with a faster onset of action would improve the pharmacologic management of depression and have wide-ranging benefits for the health care system.

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