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Tijdschrift voor Psychiatrie 50 (2008) 13, 111 - 116

Short report

Fifty years of pharmacotherapy of mood disorders: have the expectations been fulfilled?

W.A. Nolen

summary Pharmacotherapy for mood disorders has existed for more that 50 years. Many kinds of drugs are registered for the treatment of depression or bipolar disorder; these include 20 antidepressants, lithium, various anticonvulsants and antipsychotics. Their effectiveness, however, is limited. Furthermore, the different opportunities are not used to the full. Over the years hopes of greater efficacy and of better targeting have been raised as a result of various developments (e.g. more selective compounds with a different working mechanism). Unfortunately, very few of these hopes have been fulfilled.

keywords anticonvulsants, antidepressants, bipolar disorder, depression, lithium