About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Research: Routine Screening for Depression Not Recommended for Adults With No Apparent Symptoms of Depression

by Rukmani Krishna on May 16, 2013 at 12:00 AM
Font : A-A+

 Research: Routine Screening for Depression Not Recommended for Adults With No Apparent Symptoms of Depression

According to new evidence guidelines, for adults with no apparent symptoms of depression, routine screening is not recommended in primary care settings because of the lack of high-quality evidence on the benefits and harms of screening for depression. The evidence is from the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care (CTFPHC) published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

These guidelines mark a change in approach from the task force's 2005 guidelines, which recommended screening adults in primary care settings where there were integrated staff-assisted systems to manage treatment.

Advertisement

"In the absence of a demonstrated benefit of screening, and in consideration of the potential harms, we recommend not routinely screening for depression in primary care settings, either in adults at average risk or in those with characteristics that may increase their risk of depression," writes Dr. Michael Joffres, chair of the CTFPHC's depression guideline writing group and member of the Faculty of Health Sciences, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC, with coauthors.

The recommendations do not apply to people with known depression, with a history of depression or who are receiving treatment for depression.

Key recommendations:
  • No routine screening in primary care settings for adults at average risk of depression.
  • No routine screening in primary care settings for adults in subgroups of the population who may be at increased risk of depression, including people with a family history of depression, traumatic experiences as a child, recent traumatic life events, chronic health issues, substance abuse, perinatal and postpartum status, or Aboriginal origin.
    Advertisement

    However, clinicians should be alert to the possibility of depression, especially in patients with characteristics that may increase their risk of depression, and should look for it when there are clinical clues, such as insomnia, low mood, anhedonia (inability to experience pleasure) and suicidal thoughts.

    Guidelines in other countries differ slightly from the Canadian guidelines. The US Preventive Services Task Force recommends universal screening where supports exist to ensure follow-up treatment. In the United Kingdom, the National Institutes for Health and Clinical Excellence recommends a targeted approach, focusing on people with a history of depression rather than general screening.

    "These recommendations do not apply to people with known depression, with a history of depression or who are receiving treatment for depression. Patients who present with symptoms or other clues to the presence of depression should be appropriately assessed for depression," explained Dr. Gabriela Lewin, member of the CTFPHC working group.

    The task force calls for high-quality randomized controlled trials with an unscreened control group to understand the effect of screening, the potential harms of screening, such as false-positive diagnoses with subsequent unnecessary treatment, as well as the implications of earlier detection of depression through screening.

    In a related commentary, Dr. Roger Bland, Department of Psychiatry, University of Alberta, and coauthor write, "There is no question, as the task force amply illustrates, that depression constitutes a major public health problem. Although milder cases may require only watchful waiting rather than treatment, about 15% of people with major depression go on to a chronic course, with much residual disability. Family physicians have been criticized for failing to recognize depression. However, studies have shown that many missed cases are those of milder depression, which often remits spontaneously, and that patients with milder forms of depression may experience adverse effects and other complications if the depression is treated."



    Source: Eurekalert
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Advertisement
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Memory Loss - Can it be Recovered?
International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2021 - Fighting for Rights in the Post-COVID Era
Effect of Blood Group Type on COVID-19 Risk and Severity
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Adolescence Depression Depression Stress Relief Through Alternative Medicine Andropause / Male Menopause Pregnancy and Complications Bereavement Holistic Management for Depression Tourette Syndrome Dealing with Menopause symptoms through lifestyle changes Tired All The Time 

Recommended Reading
Holistic Management for Depression
Depression is a common disorder and many worldwide suffer from depression. Early recognition of ......
Depression Symptom Evaluation
Depression occurs due to alterations in the levels of neurotransmitters in the brain. ...
Depression
Depression is one of the most common mental disorders affecting approximately 340 million people in ...
Adolescent Depression
Adolescent depression is an ailment that occurs during the teenage characterized by persistent ......
Andropause / Male Menopause
Andropause or male menopause causing low libido in a man is due to decreasing level of male hormones...
Bereavement
Bereavement refers to grief, pain and sadness following the loss of a loved one, especially during t...
Dealing with Menopause symptoms through lifestyle changes
You can deal with menopause symptoms such as hot flashes, weight gain and forgetfulness by making si...
Pregnancy and Complications
In-depth guide for expecting mothers to overcome health complications related to early or late pregn...
Tired All The Time
Tired All The Time (TATT) syndrome is not only about feeling of tired, however there are a host of o...
Tourette Syndrome
Tourette syndrome (TS) is a neurological disorder wherein the affected person makes repetitive and s...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use