Healthcare Insights

Most commonly prescribed antidepressants

Major depressive disorder episodes were the most common mental health diagnoses in 2021. With more and more adults reporting symptoms of anxiety and depression, discussing how we cope and manage our mental health is becoming less taboo. Treatment options range from traditional therapy, virtual and telehealth services, digital therapeutics and medication.

The following list contains the top 20 antidepressants by prescription volume for 2021 based on data from the Definitive Healthcare ClaimsRx product.

Top 20 antidepressant medications by prescription volume

RankDrug name2021 prescriptionsExplore dataset
1Sertraline hydrochloride18,337,255Explore
2Trazodone hydrochloride15,175,105Explore
3Bupropion hydrochloride14,849,877Explore
7Venlafaxine hydrochloride7,995,409Explore
8Citalopram hydrobromide7,181,357Explore
9Escitalopram oxalate6,958,167Explore
10Amitriptyline hydrochloride5,107,340Explore
13Sumatriptan succinate2,152,081Explore
18Nortriptyline hydrochloride1,400,642Explore
19Rizatriptan benzoate1,375,510Explore
20Doxepin hydrochloride1,249,531Explore

Fig. 1.  Data from the Definitive Healthcare ClaimsRx product. Claims data is sourced from multiple medical claims clearinghouses in the United States and updated monthly. Data accurate as of June 2022.

What are the most common antidepressants?

Sertraline hydrochloride, used for multiple mental health and mood disorders, is the most prescribed antidepressant on the list with more than 18 million prescriptions in 2021. Trazadone hydrochloride, used to treat anxiety and depression, is second on the list with more than 15 million prescriptions. Next, bupropion hydrochloride had 14.8 million prescriptions and fluoxetine had nearly 13 million.

The antidepressant drugs on this list account for nearly 130.5 million prescriptions.

What are the different types of antidepressants?

Antidepressant medications can fall into a number of different categories which are based on how the drug affects the body’s chemistry. The main types of antidepressants include:

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