In a comparative study, 40 outpatients, each having a depressive syndrome as the principal clinical feature, were treated with either desipramine or imipramine. Fourteen patients on each drug completed the study. The efficacy of both drugs as antidepressants was found to be in the same range. Desipramine had a more rapid onset of action than imipramine and produced slightly fewer side effects. The difference between the number of days for onset of action and the number of side effects with both drugs is not statistically significant. The majority of patients on each drug responded well to treatment.