National Alliance on Mental Illness
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The Antidepressant Sourcebook: A User's Guide for Patients and Families

by Andrew L. Morrison, M.D.

Main Street Books, 1999. 256 pages. Paperback: $12.95
Review by David Seaman, William Zaccagnino, and Dawn Muldoon, NAMI Literature Committee

The Antidepressant Sourcebook is a somewhat elementary, but nevertheless useful manual for those involved with antidepressants. Morrison once received NAMI's Exemplary Psychiatrist award, and he is now generously donating a portion of the book proceeds to NARSAD.

Morrison explains how Prozac and its powerful close cousins actually work; explores the important question of who should be taking such drugs; warns about potential problems (delay in symptom relief, side effects, etc.); discusses dangers of discontinuing abruptly; emphasizes the importance of ongoing medical supervision; and urges persistence when dealing with mental disorders. His book is quite readable; nothing technical is attempted; and the numerous, dramatic case histories are modestly illuminating.

Depression, OCD, and some less severe illnesses are discussed. Manic depression is covered rather briefly, but the important possibility that an antidepressant might induce mania in someone with unrecognized bipolar disorder is quite properly emphasized.

The Antidepressant Sourcebook has an impressive and comprehensive "Further Reading" section, where somewhat more substantial works are listed for those interested.