Introduction: Research in prescription pattern of antidepressants in Asia is lacking. This study aims to compare the antidepressants prescription pattern in Asia in 2003-2004 and 2013. Methods: The Research in East Asia Psychotropic Prescription Pattern on Antidepressants (REAP-AD) had worked collaboratively in 2003-2004 (REAP-AD 2003/2004) and 2013 (REAP-AD 2013) to study the prescription pattern of antidepressants in Asia. The REAP-AD 2013 study was conducted in China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand using a unified research protocol and questionnaire. Results: Forty psychiatric centers participated in REAP-AD 2013 and a total of 2,319 patients receive antidepressants were analyzed. In 2013, 39.6% of the antidepressant prescriptions were for diagnoses other thandepressive disorder compared with 38.4% in REAP-AD 2003/2004. Out of all the antidepressants listed in the Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical Classification index by the World Health Organization Collaborating Center for Drug Statistics Methodology (Oslo), only 38% antidepressants were prescribed in participating centers in 2013 compared with 46% in REAP-AD 2003/2004. The selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors were the most common antidepressant prescribed in the participating centers, which was similar to the 2003-2004 survey. Prescription of newer generation antidepressants had increased in 2013 survey; on the contrary, prescription of tricyclic antidepressants had reduced. Discussion: This study has contributed significantly in relation to the changing patterns of antidepressant use in all the participating Asian centers in the last 10 years. The findings are important in shaping optimal antidepressant prescription and future policy making.
- Psychiatry and Mental health