Older Adults With Severe, Treatment-Resistant Depression

“This article (published on Dementia Care News) summarises effective strategies for the detection and treatment of late-life depression. Older patients can be screened for depression using a standard rating scale. It is then possible to initiate treatments such as antidepressants or evidence-based psychotherapy, and to monitor depression symptoms. Patients who do not improve can be considered for psychiatric consultation and more radical treatments.

It is not uncommon for changes of treatment approaches to occur before patients achieve complete remission. Maintenance treatment and relapse-prevention planning reduce the risk of relapse. Important strategies include provision of summaries of the early warning signs for depression, maintenance treatments such as medication, and other strategies to reduce the risk of relapse; for example, regular physical activity or pleasant activities.

Collaborative programs, in which primary care clinicians work closely with mental health specialists appear to be more effective than primary care treatment alone (in the USA).” Read more…

Note: I have sent in a request to the author of this article for permission to publish it in full, as I have accessed it via the University of SA, and it is worth reading in full.

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