Promise for Individuals with Chronic Fatigue
(citalopram) has been found to offer symptomatic relief and improvement in
certain individuals with idiopathic chronic fatigue according to a recent study.
Chronic fatigue is a frequent complaint of many people visiting physician
offices, and is commonly treated with antidepressant medications.
Celexa with Placebo for Chronic Fatigue:
and a research team from the University of Iowa College of Medicine, U.S.A.,
studied patients who had suffered from unexplained chronic fatigue for a period
of at least six months. Research subjects did not meet the criteria for a
diagnosis of chronic fatigue syndrome and were not experiencing either
depression, organic illness or lifestyle behaviors which would contribute to
their chronic fatigue symptoms.
divided into two groups with 31 subjects receiving a placebo for one week and
then Celexa (20-40 milligrams per day) for the next two months. Another group
of 76 subjects were given either Siberian ginseng or a placebo for two months.
Hartz and his
group reported that there was substantial improvement in symptoms of chronic
fatigue when subjects were switched from the placebo to Celexa. This was
confirmed by ratings on the Rand Vitality Index, the Global Improvement Scale,
the Mood and Anxiety Symptoms Questionnaire and individual self-reports of
somatic symptoms, including headache, muscle aches and dizziness.
significant overall improvement was noted by individuals who had suffered from
fatigue for less than five years, and improvement was more pronounced in women.
These same groups (women and those with less severe symptoms) also demonstrated
greater improvement than those taking either a placebo or Siberian Ginseng.
While there was little overall change in depression scores among most subjects,
women had significant improvement in this parameter over original baseline
reported in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry ( 2003; 64: 927-935): “In
summary, there is some evidence suggesting that citalopram (Celexa) benefited
subsets of persons with idiopathic chronic fatigue. Further studies of how to
characterize the persons benefited may improve the understanding and treatment
of chronic fatigue.”
Additional information and webpage by
(Health and Geriatric Psychologist)
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