Doctors prescribe antidepressants for a wide range of medical problems other than depression, apparently fueling the boom in sales of these medications, researchers report.

Depression accounts for only a little more than half the antidepressant prescriptions issued by Quebec physicians during the past decade, the Canadian study found.

Doctors also issued antidepressants to treat anxiety, insomnia, chronic pain, panic disorders, fibromyalgia, migraine, obsessive-compulsive disorders, and a host of other “off-label” conditions for which the drugs are not approved, according to the report.

Two out of every three non-depression prescriptions for antidepressants were handed out under an off-label purpose, the findings showed.

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