The heterogeneous nature of depression

Depression is generally considered to be a specific and consistent disorder characterised by a fixed set of symptoms and often treated with a combination of psychotherapy and medication. However, the standard rating scales used by healthcare professionals and researchers to diagnose this disease often differ in the symptoms they list, perhaps explaining why a one-size-fits-all treatment has to date been so ineffective. This is the finding of research conducted by psychologist Eiko Fried from the University of Amsterdam (UvA). His results are published in the latest edition of the Journal of Affective Disorders.

Depression is often viewed as a common medical disorder like measles – one either has it or one doesn’t. As a result, diagnosis is generally followed by assigning specific treatment options. Read more

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