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Apr 1 03 1:24 AM
Depression can be a chemical imbalance in some people, just as some other mental illness like schizophrenia or bipolar diseases can be caused
from improper balances of certain substances normally present in people who don't have such illnesses. Using medication for these people may be as
necessary as a diabetic needing insulin to treat what is basically a chemical imbalance causing a medical condition as opposed to mental illness.
It cannot be determined online by anyone whether an individual is in fact experiencing a normal adjustment period or an organic based
depression and so it is imperative that if the question is raised by an individual that he or she may be depressed that he or she gets attention from a person
in the real world who has more to go on that words written on a bulletin board. Nobody is qualified to make a definitive diagnosis of mental illness or any
diseases without getting more information both history wise and possibly physical measures only available by a physician who actually can test the
Apr 1 03 1:54 AM
There was a new depression/cessation study just released and this seems like a perfect opportunity to share the results. Having a bit of perspective on
how rare or common a condition actually is can sometimes in and of itself be reassuring. Although just 4% of participants in the below study experienced
the onset of major depression we each need to be alert to the possibility that 4% of our members may need medical help. It's not a large percentage
but a very real percentage for which treatment - not nicotine - is warranted!
Addictive Behaviors 2003 May-Jun;28(3):461-70
Onset of major depression during treatment for nicotine
Killen JD, Fortmann SP, Schatzberg A, Hayward C, Varady A.
Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, 1000 Welch Road, 94304, Palo Alto, CA, USA
We monitored the emergence of major depression (MDD) during treatment for nicotine dependence among 224 smokers.
MDD was assessed on three occasions during the course of treatment with the mood disorders portion of the Structured Clinical Interview for the Diagnostic
and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (SCID), fourth edition (DSM-IV).
Out of 224 participants, 20% had suffered a past episode of MDD, 18% of males and 22% of females. Four percent (n=10) experienced onset
of MDD during the course of the study, four males and six females. Only 2 of the 10 cases managed to achieve abstinence at end of treatment. Those who
reported large increases in depression symptoms between baseline and end of treatment (Week 10) were less likely to be abstinent at 26-week follow-up.
The evidence indicates that those who treat nicotine dependence must be prepared to monitor and respond to the emergence of depression associated with
PMID: 12628619 [PubMed - in process]
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Especially if you are a person with a past history of treatment for depression or if your depressive episode is lasting more than a week and is causing a
real disruption in your life, get checked out. You may indeed benefit from treatment or maybe your physician will just give you the reassurance that you are
really okay. Either way it doesn't hurt to get the situation professionally assessed.
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