The aims and design of the sequenced treatment alternatives to relieve depression (STAR*D) study

Bradley N. Gaynes, Lori Davis, A. John Rush, Madhukar Trivedi, Maurizio Fava, Stephen R. Wisniewski

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Major depressive disorder is expected to become the second leading cause of disability worldwide by the year 2020. A large proportion of this disability can be attributed to the large number of patients (>70%) who do not achieve sustained remission following initial treatment. Presently, the evidence available to guide management for treatment-resistant depression (TRD) is quite limited. The Sequenced Treatment Alternatives to Relieve Depression (STAR*D) study has been designed to evaluate treatment options to improve clinical outcomes for depressed outpatients who do not achieve a satisfactory outcome after one or more treatment attempts. STAR*D helps to define the best "next-step" treatments for patients with TRD, and it will provide descriptive information on the longer-term benefits of successful treatments, as well as the side-effect burden and economic costs associated with different treatments. The study has enrolled over 4,000 patients recruited from primary care and psychiatric settings in the public and private sectors. Preliminary baseline findings are currently being reported. Final results regarding preferred treatment options are expected by May 2006.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36-41
Number of pages6
JournalPrimary Psychiatry
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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