Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Depression in Preschoolers

A press release titled, “Study: Depression can hit even preschoolers,” was released in
Science Daily today (and USA Today yesterday).

The study, which followed 306 children for up to two years depression is present and chronic even at a young age and that the presence of depression is a predictor for later depression.

Family history of affective disorders was also found to be a major predictor for later depression.

“The condition also showed a chronic and recurrent course among preschoolers—in a subset of 119 preschoolers with depression or depressive symptoms…, 57 percent of those with depression had an episode during at least two follow-up points during study and 18 percent followed a chronic course...”

This study provides evidence for the importance of early intervention when treating psychiatric disorders as well as ethical issues regarding pharmacotherapy in children.

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