Generalized Anxiety Disorder | Panic Disorder | Mixed Anxiety–Depression and Major Depressive
Disorder | Nonapproved Clinical Indications
The efficacy of buspirone was established in a series of well-controlled
trials conducted in the 1970s and 1980s in a patient population
with the DSM-II diagnosis of anxiety disorder (Robinson 1991).
The clinical development program of buspirone as an anxiolytic agent
was undertaken after positive findings in a placebo-controlled proof-of-concept
study in anxious patients (Goldberg and Finnerty 1979).
It is of interest that the study investigators commented on the
possibility that buspirone possesses antidepressant as well as anxiolytic
properties. In a series of Phase III placebo-controlled clinical
trials comparing buspirone and diazepam, the efficacy of these two
anxiolytics was comparable in patients fulfilling diagnostic criteria for
DSM-II anxiety neurosis (Boehm et al. 1990a; Goldberg and Finnerty 1982; Rickels et al. 1982). In
these double-blind dosage titration studies, buspirone and diazepam were
prescribed on a thrice-daily schedule in dosages (mean) ranging
from 20 to 25 mg/day during 4 weeks of treatment.