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Thomson Reuters Study Offers New Insight on How Physicians Prescribe Psychiatric Drugs
Date:3/22/2010

phrenia or other psychotic disorders (35 percent), cognitive disorders such as dementia (7.4 percent), anxiety (6 percent), and attention-deficit/conduct-disruptive behavior disorders (6 percent).

In terms of antidepressant drugs, the study found that 93 percent of prescriptions were for psychiatric conditions, primarily mood disorders (65 percent), anxiety (16 percent), schizophrenia, and other psychotic disorders (2.6 percent). Non-psychiatric diagnoses for which antidepressants were prescribed included headaches (1.1 percent), connective tissue disease (e.g., fibromyalgia) (1 percent), and back problems (0.7 percent).

The study found that the majority of prescriptions written for anti-anxiety medication were used to treat psychiatric conditions (72 percent), although a significant percentage (28 percent) were used to for non-psychiatric diagnoses including anxiety related to medical interventions (6 percent), allergic reactions (4 percent), and back problems (2.5 percent).

The study analyzed data from the 2005 National Disease and Therapeutic Index, a nationally representative survey of about 4,000 U.S. office-based physicians conducted by IMS Health.


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