The phenomenology of depression after brain injury

Sergio Starkstein, A. Lischinsky

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    15 Citations (Scopus)


    One important challenge in neuropsychiatry is how to diagnose depression in patients with acute brain lesions, since there may be an overlap between symptoms of depression and signs associated with the neurologic disease. The best approach is to assess the presence of depressive symptoms using semi-structured or structured psychiatric interviews such as the Present State Exam, the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV, or the Schedules for Clinical Assessment in Neuropsychiatry. The diagnosis of a depressive syndrome should be made using standardized diagnostic criteria for mood disorders due to neurological disease such as in the DSM-IV or the ICD-10. Depression rating scales, such as the Hamilton Depression Scale and the Center for Epidemiologic Scales for Depression may be used to rate the severity of depression and monitor the progression of antidepressant treatment. Most studies in acute and chronic neurologic disorders demonstrated the specificity of both autonomic and psychological symptoms for the syndrome of depression.The present review article examines important considerations before a diagnosis of depression in neurologic disease, discusses a variety of psychiatric instruments that are used to examine the presence and severity of depression in neurologic disease, examines relevant phenomenological issues, and proposes different diagnostic strategies.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)105-113
    Publication statusPublished - 2002


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