It is estimated that around one in four older people may be depressed, although this condition commonly goes unrecognised. A review of the epidemiology, assessment and diagnosis of late-life depression aims to assist in the correct identification and assessment of older patients thought likely to have this condition. Some considerations covered by the authors include:
- Risk factors for late-life depression.
- Dementia and pseudodementia.
- Depression and cognitive impairment.
- Suicide in the elderly with depression.
- Assessment of late-life depression.
- Diagnosis of late-life depression (ICD 10 and DSM 5 diagnostic criteria for depression).
- Case-finding for depression (screening questions).
- Depression in the young versus the old.
- Rating scales for use with the depressed elderly patients.
George, S. Augustine, A. [and] Sudhir Kumar, CT. (2020). Late-life depression: epidemiology, assessment and diagnosis. Journal of Geriatric Care and Research. May 2020, Vol.7(1): pp.3-8.
The same team address various pharmacological, medical and psychological treatment options, to be followed cautiously after a comprehensive geriatric assessment in each case. Considerations covered comprise:
- Pre-treatment evaluation and investigations.
- NICE guidelines for the treatment of depression.
- Precautions in antidepressants prescribing.
- Monitoring of patients during treatment.
- Factors affecting risk of relapse.
- Continuation, maintenance, and relapse prevention treatment.
- Electro Convulsive Therapy (ECT) and other somatic treatments.
- Psychological interventions (CBT and IPT).
Sudhir Kumar, CT. George, S. [and] Augustine, A. (2020). Treatment of late-life depression. Journal of Geriatric Care and Research. May 2020, Vol.7(1): pp.9-16.
Possibly of interest, a case report of unusual side-effect resulting from electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) for treatment resistant depression:
Rai, A. [and] Blissitt, L. (2020). Ventricular bigeminy after electroconvulsive therapy: a case report. Journal of Geriatric Care and Research. May 2020, Vol.7(1): pp.23-26.