Fifty one patients beginning courses of antidepressant medication were recruited from general practice surgeries in two health authorities in London and interviewed on two occasions. Respondents were asked about their experiences of using antidepressant medication, including their information needs and the level of involvement which they had had in making decisions about their medication. Analysis was carried out using qualitative procedures. The study identified information needs which were unmet at the start of treatment, including the impact of adverse drug reactions on patients' lives, the very gradual process of recovery and information regarding dosage prescribed in the context of minimum and maximum dosages. Respondents also had a broad view of the term dependency that needed to be addressed. However, some respondents reported that they experienced difficulty in absorbing information given during the initial consultation. Therefore developing strategies for reinforcement of information would be advantageous. Patients involvement in decision making varied between respondents and at different points in therapy.