PEP Topic 

A class of medications to treat depression; includes subgroups of

  • Tricyclic antidepressants (i.e., older drugs, those with a high incidence of anticholinergic effects, and drugs that are highly cardiotoxic in overdose), such as desipramine, nortriptyline, amitriptyline, imipramine, doxepin, and clomipramine
  • SSRIs
  • Newer drugs—including fluoxetine, fluvoxamine, sertraline, paroxetine, citalopram, and escitalopram—with fewer severe side effects,
  • SNRIs such as venlafaxine (duloxetine is probably the most common)
  • Psychostimulants (methylphenidate is probably the most common)
  • Others (e.g., bupropion, trazodone, mirtazapine, mianserin*).

The use of antidepressants for patients with cancer has been evaluated in the treatment of depression and anxiety. Specific antidepressants have been evaluated as treatments for peripheral neuropathy.

*Not available in the United States

Recommended for Practice

Research Evidence Summaries

Guideline/Expert Opinion

Systematic Review/Meta-Analysis