To examine sex- and age-related differences of treatment outcome in a cohort of outpatients with major depressive disorder (MDD), with and without comorbid anxiety, treated with fluoxetine.Methods:
Outpatients with a SCID-diagnosis of MDD aged 18 to 65 years were treated openly with fluoxetine (20 mg/day) for 8 weeks. The 17-item Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAM-D-17) was administered at baseline, and at weeks 2, 4, 6 and 8. Remission of MDD was defined as a HAM-D-17 score ≤7 at week 8. Rates of remission and change of depressive symptoms of MDD were compared among women aged <45 years and ≥45 years. The analyses were then repeated in men. The presence of comorbid anxiety disorders was included in the prediction model for change of depressive symptoms of MDD across age and sex.Results:
176 women and 153 men were included in this analysis. Remission of MDD occurred in 57.1% and 50% of younger and older women respectively. Similar rates were present in men (57.2% and 49.1%, respectively). Age did not predict remission of depression or change of depressive symptoms of MDD, in both women and men. Anxious and non-anxious subtypes of depression did not present sex- or age-related differences in treatment outcome.Conclusion:
In this cohort of outpatients with MDD, we observed no sex- or age-related differences in response to an 8-week treatment with the SSRI fluoxetine. Similarly, there were no age-related differences among women with anxious and non-anxious subtype of depression.