2 The technology
2.1 Vortioxetine (Brintellix, Lundbeck) is an antidepressant that is thought to exhibit its clinical effect through direct modulation of receptor activity and inhibition of the serotonin transporter. Vortioxetine has a marketing authorisation in the UK 'for the treatment of major depressive episodes in adults'.
2.2 The summary of product characteristics lists the following 'common' and 'very common' adverse reactions for vortioxetine: abnormal dreams, constipation, diarrhoea, dizziness, itching, nausea and vomiting. For full details of adverse reactions and contraindications, see the summary of product characteristics.
2.3 Vortioxetine is administered orally. The recommended starting dosage is 10 mg once daily in adults younger than 65 years, and 5 mg once daily in adults 65 years and older. Depending on how the symptoms respond, the dose may be increased to a maximum of 20 mg once daily or decreased to a minimum of 5 mg once daily. Treatment for at least 6 months is recommended after the symptoms resolve. The price of a pack (28 tablets) of 5 mg, 10 mg or 20 mg tablets is £27.72 (excluding VAT; company's submission). Costs may vary in different settings because of negotiated procurement discounts.