Placebo-controlled study of tianeptine in major depressive episodes

Neuropsychobiology. 1997;35(1):24-9. doi: 10.1159/000119326.


The efficacy and safety of tianeptine were compared, in the course of a multicentre randomised, double-blind, parallel group study, to those of placebo in the treatment of Major Depressions and Bipolar Disorder, Depressed with or without melancholia, without psychotic features. After a 1-week run-in placebo period, 126 depressed out-patients presenting DSM-III-R Major Depression or Bipolar Disorder, Depressed, with a total MADRS score of at least 25, were treated for 42 days with either tianeptine (25-50 mg/day) or placebo. Efficacy assessments were MADRS, CGI, HARS, Zung Depression Self Rating Scale and a VAS. Better efficacy of tianeptine was shown, and confirmed by covariance analyses, in final MADRS scores of the intention-to-treat population, of patients treated for at least 14 days and of completers; also in CGI items 1 and 2, MADRS item 10, and VAS. The results confirmed the efficacy of tianeptine (mean dosage: 37.5 mg/day) in the treatment of Major Depression and Bipolar Disorder, Depressed, with or without melancholia, compared to placebo. Tianeptine's acceptability did not differ from that of placebo. For adverse events, a higher incidence of headaches was found with tianeptine.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antidepressive Agents, Tricyclic / adverse effects
  • Antidepressive Agents, Tricyclic / therapeutic use*
  • Bipolar Disorder / diagnosis
  • Bipolar Disorder / drug therapy*
  • Bipolar Disorder / psychology
  • Depressive Disorder / diagnosis
  • Depressive Disorder / drug therapy*
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Personality Inventory
  • Thiazepines / adverse effects
  • Thiazepines / therapeutic use*


  • Antidepressive Agents, Tricyclic
  • Thiazepines
  • tianeptine