Depression is debilitating and surprisingly common. Scientists have found that 5 percent of the people in a large survey reported symptoms of depression during the previous year. Nearly 13 percent of Americans experience depression at some point during their lives.
The big question is how to treat depression? It’s hard to get a good picture of the effectiveness of antidepressants from the published medical literature, because many studies that show little or no benefit don’t get published. Dr. Erick Turner explains how unpublished studies may skew medical opinion.
Dr. David Mischoulon discusses the pros and cons of antidepressant medication and many alternative treatments for this devastating mental disorder.
Guests: David Mischoulon, MD, PhD, is the Director of Research, Depression Clinical and Research Program, at the Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Psychiatry. He is also an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the Harvard Medical School. He is currently working on the second edition of his book, Natural Remedies for Psychiatric Disorders: Considering the Alternatives. (Photo is of Dr. Mischoulon.)
Erick Turner, M.D. is Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) and in the Department of Pharmacology & Physiology. He is the Medical Director of the Portland VA Medical Center Mood Disorders Program, where he acts as site principal investigator (PI) on several multicenter clinical drug trials. His article, “Selective Publication of Antidepressant Trials and Its Influence on Apparent Efficacy,” was published in the New England Journal of Medicine, Jan. 17, 2008.