Early response to desipramine among women with bulimia nervosa

Authors

  • B. Timothy Walsh MD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Psychiatry, College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University, New York, New York
    2. New York State Psychiatric Institute, New York, New York
    • Department of Psychiatry, College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University, 1051 Riverside Drive, Unit 98, New York, NY 10032
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  • Robyn Sysko MS,

    1. Department of Psychology, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Piscataway, New Jersey
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  • Michael K. Parides PhD

    1. Department of Biostatistics, Columbia University, New York, New York
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Abstract

Objective

Numerous trials have demonstrated the efficacy of antidepressant medications for the treatment of bulimia nervosa (BN). The current study examined whether early response to medication predicted response to medication at the end of a controlled trial.

Method

Data from two previously published studies of desipramine (DMI) were used. Seventy-seven patients with BN were included in the analysis. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were constructed to examine the relation between the percentage reduction in symptoms at each week and failure to respond to antidepressant medication at the end of the trial.

Results

Eventual nonresponders to DMI could be reliably identified in the first 2 weeks of treatment.

Conclusion

The current study provides preliminary evidence that patients with BN who will not respond to antidepressant medication can be identified in the first 2 weeks of treatment. © 2005 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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