An international survey of reported prescribing practice in the treatment of patients with generalised anxiety disorder.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE To gain insight into the experience and practice of psychiatrists in the pharmacological management of patients with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). METHODS Multiple-choice questionnaire completed by 501 psychiatrists (representing a 45% response rate) from 18 countries, selected by pharmaceutical company representatives to attend a scientific meeting, through having an interest in anxiety disorders. RESULTS Use of screening tools, routine structured diagnostic interviews, and practice guidelines was infrequent. Over one-third of patients did not receive their initial psychiatric consultation within a month after referral. A total of 45% of patients had symptoms for 2 years or longer before being diagnosed and treated. Most patients had been treated with benzodiazepines before referral. 80% of respondents always or often prescribed selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), 43% serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), or pregabalin (35%) as first-line treatments. The most frequently recommended second-line treatments were SNRIs (41%) and pregabalin (36%). Concentration difficulties, fatigue, excessive worrying and pain were reported as the symptoms most difficult to manage. CONCLUSIONS Patients with GAD have frequently been treated with benzodiazepines before referral to a psychiatrist. SSRIs were the preferred first-line treatment, and SNRIs and pregabalin preferred second-line treatments. Reported practice in this sample appears largely consistent with recent evidence-based treatment guidelines.

DOI: 10.3109/15622975.2011.624548

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@article{Baldwin2012AnIS, title={An international survey of reported prescribing practice in the treatment of patients with generalised anxiety disorder.}, author={David S . Baldwin and Christer Allgulander and Borwin Bandelow and Francisco Ferre and Stefano Pallanti}, journal={The world journal of biological psychiatry : the official journal of the World Federation of Societies of Biological Psychiatry}, year={2012}, volume={13 7}, pages={510-6} }