Rational use of antidepressants.Prim Care. 1987 Dec; 14(4):773-83.PC
The key to the proper treatment of affective illness is a correct diagnosis of the subtype of depressive illness. Thus, primary treatment recommendations include the tricyclic antidepressants for a major depressive episode, electroconvulsive therapy for a major depressive episode with psychotic features, and monoamine oxidase inhibitors for dysthymic disorder and atypical depressive episodes. Nonresponding patients are treated with either lithium augmentation of TCA therapy or ECT. Second-generation antidepressants are recommended in situations where their adverse effect profiles offer significant advantages over TCAs in an individual patient. Maintenance antidepressant treatment may be necessary to prevent recurrent depressive episodes.