Open-label nefazodone in patients with a major depressive episode and alcohol dependence

E. Sherwood Brown, Leonardo Bobadilla, Vicki A. Nejtek, Dana Perantie, Harminder Dhillon, Alan Frol

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Purpose: Major depressive disorder (MDD) and alcohol dependence (AD) frequently occur together. However, MDD clinical trials generally exclude patients with alcohol-related disorders. General Methods: A 12-week, open-label trial of nefazodone in a group of people (n=13) with both a current major depressive episode and current AD was conducted to examine the effect of this antidepressant on depressive symptoms, alcohol use, and cognition. Findings: Scores on the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HRSD) and Hamilton Rating Scale for Anxiety (HRSA) significantly decreased from baseline to exit. In addition, significant reduction in alcohol craving, drinks/week, and days of alcohol use/week was found. Scores on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT) did not significantly improve during the study. Changes in mood/anxiety and memory did not correlate with changes in alcohol use. Conclusions: Thus, nefazodone therapy was associated with improvement in mood/anxiety and alcohol use, which seem to be independent of each other in this patient sample. However, declarative memory, which was low average at baseline, did not show statistically significant improvement during the 12 weeks of the study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)681-685
Number of pages5
JournalProgress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jun 2003


  • Alcohol dependence
  • Antidepressant
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Nefazodone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Biological Psychiatry


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