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Clinical Medicine Insights: Psychiatry

Generalized Anxiety Disorder in Adults: Focus on Pregabalin

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Clinical Medicine Insights: Psychiatry 2011:3 17-35

Review

Published on 07 Jun 2011

DOI: 10.4137/CMPsy.S5069


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Abstract

Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is a chronic illness which impacts significantly on an individual's functioning and quality of life. Pregabalin is a novel structural analogue of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA, acting to reduce calcium ion flow through the α2δ subunit of pre-synaptic voltage-dependent calcium channels. Pregabalin has been used in treatment of GAD in a total of eight published controlled trials. In each trial, pregabalin has demonstrated a superiority over placebo, with response rates of over 40% in all studies, including patients on lower doses. One study has provided preliminary evidence for the efficacy of pregabalin in treatment of GAD in older adults. Pregabalin is generally well tolerated, with the most common adverse events being dizziness and somnolence. Adverse effects are generally mild-to-moderate, and transient. Pregabalin has low abuse potential. Limitations of the current literature are discussed, and directions for future research are proposed.



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