The new guidelines include evidence-based recommendations on the use of antidepressant medications, depression-focused psychotherapies, and somatic treatments.
The American Psychiatric Association (APA) has released a new clinical practice guideline for the treatment of patients with major depressive disorder. The guideline provides an update to a previous version published 10 years ago and includes new evidence-based recommendations on the use of antidepressant medications, depression-focused psychotherapies, and somatic treatments such as electro-convulsive therapy.
The guideline addresses other topics as well, including alternative and complementary treatments, the treatment of depression during pregnancy, and strategies for treatment-resistant depression.
“The five-year process of intense review, discussion and thoughtful revision-making has led us to today’s release of new guidelines that we believe will improve patient care,” said Alan J. Gelenberg, MD, in a statement. “We are hopeful these guidelines will lead to improved lives for many patients.”
Gelenberg led a work group made up of APA members with extensive research and clinical expertise in the assessment and treatment of major depressive disorder that worked to update the guidelines. The group reviewed over 13,000 articles published from 1999, when the search from the previous edition ended, to 2006.
A few key changes to the guidelines include:
To access the guidelines, click here.
To read a Psychiatric Times editorial in which APA President Carol A. Bernstein, MD, discusses the review that was conducted to ensure the guideline was free of bias, click here.
Do you feel that the updated guidelines adequately address the most prevalent topics in the treatment of this patient group? What aspect of the updated guidelines will have the most potential impact on the way you practice?