Navigation Links
Fear of Antidepressants Keep Many From Disclosing Depression
Date:9/13/2011

By Maureen Salamon
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Sept. 13 (HealthDay News) -- For a nation that seems ready to pop a pill for any ill, a new study suggests that the opposite seems true for some people with symptoms of depression, whose concerns about the side effects of antidepressants were the top reason they wouldn't disclose warning signs to their doctors.

A phone survey of more than 1,000 adults who had previously participated in the California Behavioral Risk Factor Survey System, which probed depression-related beliefs, showed that 43 percent reported one or more reasons for not talking to their primary care physician about their depression. Nearly a quarter of them worried that their doctor would recommend antidepressants -- the most frequently cited reason for withholding the information.

Other stated barriers to sharing depressive symptoms included the belief that it's not a primary care physician's job to deal with emotional issues (16 percent) and concerns about medical record confidentiality (15 percent). At least 10 percent said they were fearful of being referred to a counselor or psychiatrist and of being labeled a psychiatric patient.

"When patients are diagnosed with depression, they can go into a state of shock emotionally and view it as some kind of indictment of personality or character," said Dr. Norman Sussman, a professor of psychiatry at New York University Langone Medical Center, who was not involved in the study. "People would almost prefer to get a serious medical diagnosis than be told they have a psychiatric disorder."

The study is published in the September/October 2011 issue of the Annals of Family Medicine, and was supported by a grant from the National Institute of Mental Health.

About 10 percent of Americans suffer from depression at any given time, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which released a report early this month indicating about half the population will experience some form of mental health problem at some point in their lives.

Study authors noted the irony that those who were most reluctant to talk to a primary care physician about their depression tended to be those who had the most potential to benefit from such a conversation -- patients with moderate to severe depressive symptoms.

Co-author Dr. Richard L. Kravitz, a professor of internal medicine at University of California, Davis, said targeted education programs -- such as brochures or posters in primary care offices reminding patients that doctors are interested in hearing about symptoms of depression -- are simple ways to nudge conversations that could be life-altering or even lifesaving.

"On the one hand, the fact that 16 percent of patients felt it wasn't their primary doctor's job to deal with depression meant that [84 percent] did feel it was within their doctor's purview," said Kravitz, also co-vice chair of research in the department of internal medicine. "Always, the glass is half full or half empty. But overall, the news is mixed and there are . . . some simple things physicians can do in their own practices."

Also a concern is that primary care physicians may fail to recognize depressive symptoms in their patients, said Dr. Alan Manevitz, a clinical psychiatrist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York. Manevitz, noting that many primary doctors prescribe anti-depressants after a "haphazard" diagnostic process, may not follow up correctly because of time constraints or an overconcentration on physical complaints.

"A major reason people don't like to reveal things about themselves is they're afraid their doctor then may not take physical symptoms seriously -- they're worried their symptoms may be minimized because they're depressed," he said. "That's a myth. I think it's something doctors are much more sophisticated about."

Sussman said the implications of not reporting and treating depression can be serious, with damaging effects on careers, relationships and overall health. About 8.4 million Americans had suicidal thoughts in 2008 and 2.2 million made plans to kill themselves, according to the recent CDC report.

"The patients are correct in that there's a certain amount of misgivings in being treated with antidepressants," which are linked to sexual dysfunction, weight gain and even some cardiac effects, Sussman said. "No one wants to take these medications if they don't have to, but at least two-thirds get some benefit. So there are consequences of not telling your doctor."

In some cases, physicians can work with patients' concerns about medication side effects by starting with the lowest doses of antidepressants known to be effective. Patients who choose a treatment plan that does not include antidepressants can also benefit from a referral to a psychologist, who can work with them in talk therapy and closely monitor their depression.

More information

For more about depression, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Depression.

SOURCES: Richard L. Kravitz, M.D., M.S.P.H., professor, internal medicine, and co-vice chair, research, department of internal medicine, University of California, Davis; Alan Manevitz, M.D., clinical psychiatrist, Lenox Hill Hospital, New York City; Norman Sussman, professor, psychiatry, NYU Langone Medical Center, New York City; September/October 2011 Annals of Family Medicine


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Americans Use of Antidepressants On the Rise: Study
2. Certain Antidepressants Linked to Falls in Nursing Homes
3. Two Antidepressants Given to Dementia Patients Ineffective: Study
4. Research reveals that 10 percent of middle-aged Europeans are on antidepressants
5. Common Painkillers May Blunt Antidepressants
6. Antidepressants may not improve all symptoms of depression, UT Southwestern researchers find
7. U. Iowa study suggests antidepressants aid physical recovery in stroke
8. Study Hints at Link Between Antidepressants and Heart Trouble
9. Antidepressants linked to thicker arteries
10. Decrease in suicide not linked to newer antidepressants
11. Autism: Lack of evidence for antidepressants
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Fear of Antidepressants Keep Many From Disclosing Depression
(Date:6/25/2016)... Montreal, Canada (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... the pursuit of success. In terms of the latter, setting the bar too high ... low, risk more than just slow progress toward their goal. , Research from ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is World Sickle Cell Observance Day. In ... benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center of Marne, Michigan, has issued ... Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the red blood cells, which can ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... MIAMI, Fla. (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... Florida Trend magazine’s 2016 Legal Elite. The attorneys chosen by their peers for this ... of Florida. , Seven Greenberg Traurig Shareholders received special honors as members of this ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... Inc, makers of Topricin and MyPainAway Pain Relief Products, join The ‘Business for a Fair ... hour by 2020 and then adjusting it yearly to increase at the same rate as ... the wage floor does not erode again, and make future increases more predictable. , The ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... NY (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... Haute Living, is proud to recognize Dr. Barry M. Weintraub as a prominent ... “the most beautiful women in the world, and the most handsome men, look ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... --  Pulmatrix, Inc ., (NASDAQ: PULM ), ... today that it was added to the Russell Microcap ... set of U.S. and global equity indexes on June ... for Pulmatrix," said Chief Executive Officer Robert Clarke ... in developing drugs for crucial unmet medical needs, and ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016  MedSource announced today that ... e-clinical software solution of choice.  This latest decision ... value to their clients by offering a state-of-the-art ... relationship establishes nowEDC as the EDC platform of ... full-service clients.  "nowEDC has long been a preferred ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Research ... "Pharmaceutical Excipients Market by Type (Organic Chemical (Sugar, Petrochemical, ... (Oral, Topical, Coating, Parenteral) - Global Forecast to 2021" ... The global pharmaceutical excipients market is ... a CAGR of 6.1% in the forecast period 2016 ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: