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Minerva Psichiatrica 2002 December;43(4):259-74


language: Italian

Bibliometric analysis of scientific publications on serotonin selective reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) in the period 1980-2000

López-Muñoz F., Alamo C., Rubio G., García-García P., Martín-Agueda B.


The selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) constitute a group of medicines that, since their introduction in the clinic, have been successful, about clinical use and scientific search. So we have considered interesting to realize a bibliographical study about the reported scientific publications regarding these medicines. The employed database has been EMBASE: Psychiatry CD-ROM. We have selected those documents whose title contained the indications fluvoxamine, fluoxetine, paroxetine, sertraline or citalopram. In total, through search on internet, they have been picked 3622 original documents, up published between 1980 and 2000. Our results underline a inaccuracy of the law of Price, as the scientific production on the SSRIs doesn't involve an exponential growth (coefficient of correlation r of 0.937, in comparison to a r of 0.946 for linear adjustment), because of the existence of a point of preceding glut. The review more employed for the diffusion of articles about the SSRIs is the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry (first zone of Bradford) with 312 articles, followed by the American Journal of Psychiatry (283, second zone of Bradford). It is important underline that, in 10 review (on a total of 512) has been published 38.18% of the documents of the analyzed repertoire. As it regards the origin of the articles, the U.S.A is the most productive country (index of share IPa = 41.50), followed by United Kingdom (10.68), Italy (6.35) and France (5.01). The Pharmaceutical Industry, responsible for the development of these molecules, has produced 10,38% of the documents. The 90.28% of the works have been published in English. Through manual codifies, the articles have been classified in four groups: Experimental Pharmacology (8.38), Tolerance and Safety (34.94%), Clinical Effectiveness (49.11%) and not specified (7.56%). The most studies drug has been the fluoxetine (1745 articles), followed by paroxetine (659), fluvoxamine (539), sertraline (516) and citalopram (332). The most categories of disorders taken to examination have been mood disorders (843), anxiety disorders (323), abuse of substances (61), psychotic (49) and eating disorders (38). The diagnostic categories of the DSM-IV on which mostly the SSRIs have been mostly studied corresponded to some of their approved therapeutic indications: depression (834), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) (171), panic disorder (75), social phobia (33) and nervous bulimia (31). Among the approved psychiatric pathologies, it is important to considered the schizophrenia (49) and the alcoholism (42), and among the not psychiatric, we distinguished the premestrual syndrome (30), dementias (20) and obesity (18). In proportion to the total publications for each of the SSRIs, the paroxetine has devoted more works to the depression, to the social phobia and to generalized anxiety disorder (respectively 28.07%; 2.28% and 0.76% of its production), while fluvoxamine have paid more attention to the obsessive-compulsive disorder (9.28%), citalopram to the panic disorder (2.62%), fluoxetine to the bulimia (1.43%) and sertraline to the premestrual syndrome and to the post-traumatic disorder from stress (1.74% and 1.16%, respectively). The control antidepressants more used in the comparative clinical studies of the SSRIs were the amitriptiline (51), the imipramine (42) and the clomipramine (32).

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