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The American Psychiatric Association's recently revised guidelines for the treatment of major depressive disorder indicated that it is important to consider symptom severity in initial treatment selection. In the present report from the Rhode Island Methods to Improve Diagnostic Assessment and Services (MIDAS) project, we conducted two studies of psychiatric outpatients examining the correlates of severity classification based on a self-report depression scale. The first sample consisted of 470 depressed outpatients who completed the Clinically Useful Depression Outcome Scale (CUDOS) and measures of psychosocial morbidity at the time of presentation. The second sample consisted of 112 depressed outpatients who completed the CUDOS and were evaluated with the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale at baseline and after 3 months of treatment. Compared to mildly depressed patients, moderately depressed patients reported significantly more psychosocial morbidity across all functional domains. The same differences were found between moderately and severely depressed patients. Greater severity of depression was associated with lower rates of response and remission. The results of the present studies suggest that a self-report depression questionnaire can validly subtype depressed patients according to gradations of severity.
Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Brown University School of Medicine, Rhode Island Hospital, Providence, RI, USA. Electronic address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Psychiatry research
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