Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Severe chronic depression more likely in child sex abuse victims

Date:
November 6, 2013
Source:
Plataforma SINC
Summary:
A new study reveals the highest risk variables of chronic depression in the population -- such as having suffered previous episodes of depression, delayed treatment, whether related to other physical or mental health problems, or having suffered sexual abuse during childhood -- affects almost half of patients seeking treatment for depression and carries with it significant problems in terms of disability, suffering and the cost of healthcare.

Chronic major depressive disorder, with episodes that last more than 24 months, affects almost half of patients seeking treatment for depression and carries with it significant problems in terms of disability, suffering and the cost of healthcare.
Credit: SINC

A new study reveals the highest risk variables of chronic depression in the population, such as having suffered previous episodes of depression, delayed treatment, whether it is related to other physical or mental health problems, or having suffered sexual abuse during childhood.

Chronic major depressive disorder, with episodes that last more than 24 months, affects almost half of patients seeking treatment for depression and carries with it significant problems in terms of disability, suffering and the cost of healthcare.

A piece of research carried out by Mauro García-Toro, a scientist from the University of the Balearic Islands (UIB), during a stay at Columbia University in New York, along with researchers from both institutions, reveals the main risk factors for this disease.

Published in the Journal of Affective Disorders, the study analyses several variables related to the physical and mental health of over 35,000 residents of the USA who are representative of the country's population.

After three years, the researchers got back in contact with the same people to observe how these variables had evolved and they focused on identifying the characteristics that increased the risk of severe chronic depression persisting once it has started.

As García-Toro explains to SINC: "Identifying risk factors for the persistence and remission of severe depression is important in order to progress in our understanding of the causes and development of the most effective preventative treatments and therapies."

The experts concluded that the highest risk variables for this illness were early onset of depression, delayed treatment, whether it is linked to other physical or mental health problems, and sexual abuse in childhood.

"The longer depression persists, the more likely the subjects interviewed are to recount having undergone sexual abuse, which no doubt means that they have been exposed to severe stress on many occasions in early life," notes García-Toro.

In fact, the researcher affirms that, "In addition to the usual psychological trauma, it has been demonstrated that this stress modifies the neurochemistry and structure of the brain, making it more vulnerable to depression."

Another consequence of abuse

The results reveal that 10% of all the people interviewed said that they had undergone sexual abuse as children, but of those who suffered severe depression for more than five years, this proportion approached 40%.

"These data are for men and women," the researcher points out. Thus, "as we know that sexual abuse is much more common in girls, it is highly likely that in the adult female population more than half of those with severe depression for more than five years suffered sexual abuse as children."

According to the authors, it is important to bring this situation to the fore in order to discover such examples -- as not all patients recount these events spontaneously -- and thus be able to intervene to improve treatment for those suffering from chronic depression.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Plataforma SINC. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Persistence of chronic major depression: A national prospective study. Mauro García-Toro, Jose M. Rubio, Margalida Gili, Miguel Roca, Chelsea J. Jin, Shang-Min Liu, Camilla Bastianoni, Carlos Blanco. Journal of Affective Disorders, November 2013

Cite This Page:

Plataforma SINC. "Severe chronic depression more likely in child sex abuse victims." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 November 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131106084406.htm>.
Plataforma SINC. (2013, November 6). Severe chronic depression more likely in child sex abuse victims. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131106084406.htm
Plataforma SINC. "Severe chronic depression more likely in child sex abuse victims." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131106084406.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

Newsy (July 29, 2014) — If you've been looking for love online, there's a chance somebody has been looking at how you're looking. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

Newsy (July 29, 2014) — Researchers have found certain facial features can make us seem more attractive or trustworthy. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Newsy (July 27, 2014) — A new study shows sleep deprivation can make it harder for people to remember specific details of an event. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
University Quiz Implies Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians

University Quiz Implies Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians

Newsy (July 25, 2014) — An online quiz from a required course at Ohio State is making waves for suggesting atheists are inherently smarter than Christians. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins