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Effects of the androgen antagonist flutamide and the serotonin reuptake inhibitor citalopram in bulimia nervosa: a placebo-controlled pilot study.

Journal article
Authors Charlotta Sundblad-Elverfors
Mikael Landén
Tomas Eriksson
Lars Bergman
Elias Eriksson
Published in Journal of clinical psychopharmacology
Volume 25
Issue 1
Pages 85-8
ISSN 0271-0749
Publication year 2005
Published at Institute of Physiology and Pharmacology, Dept of Pharmacology
Pages 85-8
Language en
Links www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.f...
Keywords Adult, Androgen Antagonists, therapeutic use, Bulimia, drug therapy, psychology, Citalopram, therapeutic use, Double-Blind Method, Drug Therapy, Combination, Female, Flutamide, therapeutic use, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Pilot Projects, Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors, therapeutic use, Transaminases, blood
Subject categories Physiology

Abstract

Prompted by previous studies suggesting that bulimia nervosa in women may be associated with elevated serum levels of testosterone, we have evaluated the possible effect of androgen antagonism in this condition. To this end, women meeting the DSM-IV criteria of bulimia nervosa, purging type, were treated in a one-center study with the androgen receptor antagonist flutamide (n = 9), the serotonin reuptake inhibitor citalopram (n = 15), flutamide plus citalopram (n = 10), or placebo (n = 12) for 3 months using a double-blind design. Self-rated global assessment of symptom intensity suggests all active treatments to be superior to placebo. The reduction in binge eating compared with baseline was statistically significant in both groups given flutamide but not in the groups given citalopram only or placebo. A moderate and reversible increase in serum transaminase levels led to discontinuation in two subjects in the flutamide group. It is concluded that blockade of androgen receptors may reduce some of the symptoms of bulimia nervosa in women.

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