NICE warns GPs over antidepressant use

GPs should not prescribe antidepressants routinely for long periods, or to treat mild depression, NICE has warned.

BMJ research reveals an increase in long-term antidepressant use across the UK
BMJ research reveals an increase in long-term antidepressant use across the UK

Updated guidance published this week says GPs should only consider the drugs for patients with moderate or severe depression, or those suffering sub-threshold depressive symptoms for at least two years.

The latest guidance comes as research in the BMJ reveals an increase in long-term antidepressant use across the UK.

The researchers assessed all cases of depression from 1993 to 2005 across 170 surgeries, covering 1.7 million patients.

They found that prescriptions per patient rose from 2.8 in 1993 to 5.6 in 2004, despite a drop in the number of patients diagnosed with depression.

The researchers said the rise may be due to more patients taking antidepressants on a long-term basis.

  • Read the full version of this story in this week's edition of GP dated 30 October

GP Online recommends

NICE

Read more

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

Child coughing

NICE traffic light tool that helps GPs spot seriously ill under-5s 'unreliable'

NICE's 'traffic light' system - intended to help GPs indentify risk of serious illness...

Vaccination tracker

UK COVID-19 vaccination programme tracker

GPs across the UK have led the largest-ever NHS vaccination programme in response...

GMC sign

Overseas-graduate GPs fare worse in medical tribunals due to lack of legal help

UK GPs who graduated overseas face worse outcomes in GMC cases because they are far...

Woman using HRT patch

Practical advice for GPs on prescribing HRT

GP menopause specialists Dr Louise Newson and Dr Olivia Jones provides an overview...

NHS logo on tiled wall

PCNs falling short on 26,000 staff target and need more flexibility, GPs warn

Government plans to bring in 26,000 staff by 2024 to support general practice are...

Talking General Practice logo with picture of Dr Ed Cantelo and Dr Tommy Perkins

Podcast: How two GPs set up a business to advise doctors about finance

Talking General Practice speaks to GPs Dr Tommy Perkins and Dr Ed Cantelo from Medics...