Treating Winter Depression Before It Starts

New McLean Hospital Study Seeks Participants

September 25, 2002

Public Affairs

Belmont, MA - Doctors at McLean Hospital are enrolling sufferers of winter depression into a clinical research study comparing a common antidepressant medication against placebo.

Winter depression, also known as seasonal affective disorder (SAD), is a form of depression characterized by symptoms that begin in the fall, peak in the winter and usually resolve in the spring. More than 10 million Americans may suffer from SAD each year.

The goal of the three-to-seventh-month study is to examine whether administering antidepressants before winter depression begins helps prevent the onset of symptoms.

Men and women interested in participating in the study must be at least 18 years old, and have a history of winter depression that has occurred in a seasonal pattern during the autumn and winter for the last two years. Volunteers should not be currently depressed.

After signing an informed consent form, volunteers will undergo a screening visit to determine if they meet entry criteria and to collect background information about their depressive episodes. Qualified participants will be asked to complete up to 11 scheduled visits along with seven telephone visits over the course of the study.

All office visits, medical evaluations, and study medications related to this study will be provided at no charge to the participants.

Individuals who wish to enroll in the study should call Cindy McGreenery at 617-855-2973.

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