Department of Psychiatry
Penn Behavioral Health

Center for Neurobiology and Behavior

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Pristiq (Desvenlafaxine) in the treatment of Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Principal Investigator:
Falk Lohoff, MD
Contact: Lalita Luthra (coordinator) - 215.746.6419

Brief Study Synopsis

This study will investigate efficacy and safety of Desvenlafaxine in 60 patients with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) using an 8-week double-blind placebo controlled study design (n=30 drug; n=30 placebo). Desvenlafaxine (DVS) has been recently approved for the treatment of major depressive disorder; however, no data exist on its efficacy in GAD. Given that DVS is the active metabolite of venlafaxine (FDA approved for GAD), we hypothesize that DVS will also be effective in anxiety disorders. Primary outcome measure will be HAM-A reduction at 8 weeks.


Key Inclusion Criteria

  • Age > 18 (no upper age limit)
  • GAD
  • Patient willingness to be only on Pristiq or Placebo for 8 weeks.

Key Exclusion Criteria

  • Treatment with Pristiq (DVS) at any time in the past
  • Treatment with venlafaxine or duloxetine at any time in the past
  • Treatment resistant GAD
  • Comorbid MDD, panic disorder, other major Axis I or II


If you are interested in participating in our research or simply want more information, contact Lalita Luthra, study coordinator, by phone or email.

Lalita Luthra
University of Pennsylvania
Department of Psychiatry
3535 Market Street, Suite 670
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Phone: 215-746-6419
Fax: 215-898-0509