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Tijdschrift voor Psychiatrie 56 (2014) 10, 651 - 659

Review article

Irreversible monoamine oxidase inhibitors (IMAOI) to treat depressive disorders – limited use at present in Flanders

L. Willaert, P. Verbeke, P. Sienaert, J. De Fruyt

background Irreversible monoamine oxidase inhibitors (imaoi) are rarely used in Flanders. Such an anti-imaoi policy is not in keeping with the role that imaoi now play in the general guidelines for the treatment of depressive disorders.
aim To provide an overview of the history and the current use of imaoi in Flanders.
method We searched the literature and the literature used in the psychiatric courses taught at Ghent University and the Catholic University of Leuven and we consulted the Acta (Neurologica et) Psychiatrica Belgica. The information we collected was supplemented by personal communications from experts and by data about the period of commercialisation, the pharmaceutical companies producing imaoi and the use of imaoi.
results imaoi were introduced rapidly onto the Flemish market but their popularity was short-lived. University courses did not give much attention to imaoi and the attitude to these inhibitors was negative. At the moment, phenelzine is the only imaoi available on the Flemish market and is only rarely prescribed.
conclusion Following the international trend, imaoi in Flanders initially enjoyed a short period of popularity. However, the limited use of phenelzine at present is not in line with the current guidelines for the treatment of depressive disorders. Practitioners and health professionals need to be better informed. Better education and wider use of imaoi in Flanders are recommended.

keywords antidepressants, depressive disorder, Flanders, irreversible monoamine oxidase inhibitors