Drug-induced depression has been the focus of intense scrutiny by the US Food and Drug Administration and has serious clinical and medicolegal implications. "Gold standard" studies of drug-induced depression-involving randomized, placebo-controlled design and direct assessment of depressive symptoms-are lacking. Based on the available literature, our review suggests that only a few types of drugs are strongly linked with induction of depression. However, the potential for idiosyncratic reactions-not necessarily detected in large-scale studies-suggests that particular caution and careful monitoring are warranted with several types of drugs, including isotretinoin, rimonabant, and alpha interferons.
Keywords: depressogenic; depressogenic drugs; drug-induced depression; iatrogenic depression; secondary depression.