Every cell in our bodies runs on a 24-hour clock, tuned to the night-day, light-dark cycles that have ruled us since the dawn of humanity. The brain acts as timekeeper, keeping the cellular clock in sync ...
Medical research May 13, 2013 | 4 / 5 (19) | 4 |
Working with mice, Johns Hopkins researchers have established a link between elevated levels of a stress hormone in adolescence—a critical time for brain development—and genetic changes that, in young adulthood, cause ...
Neuroscience Jan 17, 2013 | 5 / 5 (5) | 3 |
(Medical Xpress)—A compassion-based meditation program can significantly improve a person's ability to read the facial expressions of others, finds a study published by Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience. ...
Psychology & Psychiatry Oct 04, 2012 | 4.5 / 5 (2) | 0 |
(HealthDay) -- A small new study gives insight into how electroshock therapy, an effective yet poorly understood treatment for severe depression, affects the brains of depressed people.
Psychology & Psychiatry Mar 19, 2012 | 4.1 / 5 (8) | 0 |
(Medical Xpress) -- The antidepressant fluoxetine, which is marketed under the name "Prozac," has been approved for use in the US for over two decades, and while some people find it effective, the results ...
Neuroscience Dec 23, 2011 | 3.6 / 5 (5) | 0 |
Scientists at the Fisher Center for Alzheimer's Disease Research at The Rockefeller University, led by Paul Greengard, Ph.D., and Jennifer Warner-Schmidt, Ph.D., have shown that anti-inflammatory drugs, which include ibuprofen, ...
Medications Apr 25, 2011 | 4 / 5 (1) | 0 |
(PhysOrg.com) -- By holding an electromagnet close to a persons skull, researchers can alter the neuron activity in the persons brain. This technique, called transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), ...
Medical research Apr 12, 2011 | 4.5 / 5 (11) | 24 |
For nearly a decade, doctors have used an implanted electronic stimulator to treat severe depression in people who don't respond to standard antidepressant therapy.
Psychology & Psychiatry May 07, 2013 | not rated yet | 0 |
Patients whose severe depression goes into remission for six months following electroconvulsive therapy report a quality of life similar to that of healthy individuals, researchers say.
Psychology & Psychiatry Apr 15, 2013 | not rated yet | 0 |
(Medical Xpress)—An antidepressant drug used since the 1960s may also hold promise for treating sickle cell disease, according to a surprising new finding made in mice and human red blood cells by a team ...
Medical research Feb 19, 2013 | 5 / 5 (4) | 0 |
(Medical Xpress)—Researchers from the Black Dog Institute and University of NSW have used brain imaging technology to show that young people with a known genetic risk of bipolar but no clinical signs of ...
Psychology & Psychiatry Dec 17, 2012 | not rated yet | 0 |
Experimental agent briefly eases depression rapidly in test: Works in brain like ketamine, with fewer side effects
(Medical Xpress)—A drug that works through the same brain mechanism as the fast-acting antidepressant ketamine briefly improved treatment-resistant patients' depression symptoms in minutes, with minimal untoward side effects, ...
Psychology & Psychiatry Dec 11, 2012 | 5 / 5 (1) | 0 |
Presently, there are about 40 million Americans over the age of 65, with the fastest-growing segment of the population over 80 years old. Traditionally, aging has been viewed as a period of progressive decline in physical, ...
Health Dec 07, 2012 | 3.5 / 5 (2) | 2 |
Long viewed as a contributing factor in teenage isolation, computer games are now being used to treat adolescent depression in an innovative New Zealand programme.
Psychology & Psychiatry Jul 31, 2012 | 4.5 / 5 (2) | 0
(Medical Xpress) -- Last month the United Nations backed a study that produced among other things the statistic that 15 million babies were born prematurely in 2010, a number that represents how far medical ...
Psychology & Psychiatry Jun 04, 2012 | 5 / 5 (2) | 0 |
Major depressive disorder (MDD) (also known as recurrent depressive disorder, clinical depression, major depression, unipolar depression, or unipolar disorder) is a mental disorder characterized by an all-encompassing low mood accompanied by low self-esteem, and by loss of interest or pleasure in normally enjoyable activities. This cluster of symptoms (syndrome) was named, described and classified as one of the mood disorders in the 1980 edition of the American Psychiatric Association's diagnostic manual. The term "depression" is ambiguous. It is often used to denote this syndrome but may refer to other mood disorders or to lower mood states lacking clinical significance. Major depressive disorder is a disabling condition that adversely affects a person's family, work or school life, sleeping and eating habits, and general health. In the United States, around 3.4% of people with major depression commit suicide, and up to 60% of people who commit suicide had depression or another mood disorder.
The diagnosis of major depressive disorder is based on the patient's self-reported experiences, behavior reported by relatives or friends, and a mental status examination. There is no laboratory test for major depression, although physicians generally request tests for physical conditions that may cause similar symptoms. If depressive disorder is not detected in the early stages it may result in a slow recovery and affect or worsen the person's physical health. Standardized screening tools such as Major Depression Inventory can be used to detect major depressive disorder. The most common time of onset is between the ages of 20 and 30 years, with a later peak between 30 and 40 years.
Typically, patients are treated with antidepressant medication and, in many cases, also receive psychotherapy or counseling, although the effectiveness of medication for mild or moderate cases is questionable. Hospitalization may be necessary in cases with associated self-neglect or a significant risk of harm to self or others. A minority are treated with electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). The course of the disorder varies widely, from one episode lasting weeks to a lifelong disorder with recurrent major depressive episodes. Depressed individuals have shorter life expectancies than those without depression, in part because of greater susceptibility to medical illnesses and suicide. It is unclear whether or not medications affect the risk of suicide. Current and former patients may be stigmatized.
The understanding of the nature and causes of depression has evolved over the centuries, though this understanding is incomplete and has left many aspects of depression as the subject of discussion and research. Proposed causes include psychological, psycho-social, hereditary, evolutionary and biological factors. Certain types of long-term drug use can both cause and worsen depressive symptoms. Psychological treatments are based on theories of personality, interpersonal communication, and learning. Most biological theories focus on the monoamine chemicals serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine, which are naturally present in the brain and assist communication between nerve cells.
This text uses material from Wikipedia and is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.
Latest Spotlight News
(Medical Xpress)—A new study by researchers in the US has shown that an ancient virus can be modified to help in the fight against the simian immunodeficiency virus SIV, which is the equivalent in monkeys ...
22 hours ago | 5 / 5 (3) | 0 |
Two mutations central to the development of infantile myofibromatosis (IM)—a disorder characterized by multiple tumors involving the skin, bone, and soft tissue—may provide new therapeutic targets, according to researchers ...
16 hours ago | 3 / 5 (2) | 0 |
Women at a particular stage in their monthly menstrual cycle may be more vulnerable to some of the psychological side-effects associated with stressful experiences, according to a study from UCL.
19 hours ago | 3.7 / 5 (3) | 0 |
Biological processes are generally based on events at the molecular and cellular level. To understand what happens in the course of infections, diseases or normal bodily functions, scientists would need to ...
19 hours ago | 5 / 5 (5) | 0 |
(Medical Xpress)—Patients with diabetes who are depressed are much more likely to develop episodes of dangerously low blood sugars, or hypoglycemia, than are those who are not depressed, a new study has ...
23 hours ago | not rated yet | 0 |
(Medical Xpress)—Regulating the distribution of power in neurons is done by a system that makes the national electric grid look simple by comparison. Each neuron has several thousand mitochondria confined ...
May 23, 2013 | 4.9 / 5 (9) | 0 |
(Medical Xpress)—A research team, led by Jeremy Barr, a biology post-doctoral fellow, unveils a new immune system that protects humans and animals from infection.
May 20, 2013 | 4.8 / 5 (29) | 9 |
Until now, little was scientifically known about the human potential to cultivate compassion—the emotional state of caring for people who are suffering in a way that motivates altruistic behavior.
May 22, 2013 | 5 / 5 (4) | 6 |
Teams of highly respected Alzheimer's researchers failed to replicate what appeared to be breakthrough results for the treatment of this brain disease when they were published last year in the journal Science.
May 23, 2013 | 3 / 5 (2) | 3 |
A brief visual task can predict IQ, according to a new study. This surprisingly simple exercise measures the brain's unconscious ability to filter out visual movement. The study shows that individuals whose ...
May 23, 2013 | 4.6 / 5 (14) | 2 |