Clinical presentation and course of depression in youth: Does onset in childhood differ from onset in adolescence?

Boris Birmaher, Douglas E. Williamson, Ronald E. Dahl, David A. Axelson, Joan Kaufman, Lorah D. Dorn, Neal D. Ryan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

116 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: To simultaneously and prospectively compare the clinical presentation, course, and parental psychiatric history between children and adolescents with major depressive disorder. Method: A group of prepubertal children (n = 46) and postpubertal adolescents (n = 22) were assessed with structured interviews for psychopathology and parental psychiatric history and followed once every 2 years for approximately 5 years. Results: With the exception of more depressive melancholic symptoms in the adolescents, both groups had similar depressive symptomatology, duration (average 17 months), severity of the index episode, rates of recovery (85%) and recurrence (40%), comorbid disorders, and parental psychiatric history. Female sex, increased guilt, prior episodes of depression, and parental psychopathology were associated with worse longitudinal course. Conclusions: In general, major depressive disorder is manifested similarly in children and adolescents, and both groups have a protracted clinical course and high family loading for psychiatric disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)63-70
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Volume43
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2004

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • Children
  • Longitudinal course
  • Major depressive disorder

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Clinical presentation and course of depression in youth: Does onset in childhood differ from onset in adolescence?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this