Assessment Evaluation of the Health Economics of Anti- Depressants (AHEAD)
Brief Summary Objectives: This study is a pragmatic, randomised, trial designed to compare the cost-effectiveness and cost-utility of the initial choice of anti-depressants in general practice between tricyclics, SSRIs and lofepramine.
Methods: The study is a pragmatic, randomised, open-label trial of treatment with three groups of anti-depressants in a representative sample of patients presenting to their general practitioners with symptoms of depression. Allocation bias is reduced by blinding the GP to the randomised treatment until the patient is registered and blinding independent raters to treatment for some measures. Clinical effectiveness is measured using HADD scores and symptom free days. Utility and quality of life is measured using the EuroQol EQ-5D and SF-36. The study takes an NHS perspective and all direct health care resource usage will be recorded and costed.
Main collaborators: Professor Christopher Thompson, Prof A Kendrick, Dr R Peveler and Dr H Smith (University of Southampton)