A Consumer Perspective of Diagnosis and Treatment of Chronic Major Depression

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The National Depressive and Manic-Depressive Association (National DMDA) is a nonprofit, mission-driven, consumer advocacy organization that was founded to educate patients, their families, and the public about the nature and management of depressive and manic depressive illness. Although treatments for mood disorders have been available for decades, individuals with chronic major depression are often misdiagnosed or inappropriately treated. Serious gaps in the translation of research findings into clinical management exist and are attributable to patient, provider, and health care system factors. This article discusses the barriers to diagnosis and the ways to improve recognition and treatment of chronic major depression from the consumer perspective.

J Clin Psychiatry 2001;62(suppl 6):30-34