Follow-up care low among adolescents with new depression symptoms

O’Connor, B. C. et al. Usual Care for Adolescent Depression From Symptom Identification Through Treatment Initiation. JAMA Pediatrics, 2016;

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Image source: Amanda Hatfield

While most adolescents with newly identified depression symptoms received some treatment within three months, some of them did not receive any follow-up care and 40 percent of adolescents prescribed antidepressant medication did not have any documented follow-up care for three months, according to an article.

The authors report that among 4,612 participants (average age 16 at the initial event and 66 percent female), treatment was initiated for 2,934 participants and most of them received psychotherapy alone or in conjunction with medications.

However, in the three months after symptoms were identified, 36 percent of adolescents received no treatment (n=1,678), 68 percent did not have a follow-up symptom assessment (n=3,136) and 19 percent did not receive any follow-up care (n=854), according to the results. Additionally, 40 percent of adolescents prescribed antidepressant medication did not have follow-up care documented for three months (n=356).

Read the full commentary via ScienceDaily

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