FIVE THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT DEPRESSION IN WOMAN

Life has numerous turns and twists. Women encounter many stages of growth and change, from puberty and menstruation to giving birth to menopause. All these rites of passage create emotional ups and downs. Because of these factors, women may have a greater susceptibility to depression. Indeed, depression occurs in women at approximately twice the rate of men.

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MAINTAINING MENTAL WELL-BEING IN STRESSFUL JOBS

David Brabon is a plastic surgeon. In his practice at Rockcastle Hospital and Respiratory Center in Mount Vernon, Ky. – the largest respiratory care center in the United States – he removes skin cancers from faces and hands and rebuilds shattered noses, among other tasks. He has learned to not only encourage others but to maintain his own mental well-being.

….FULL ARTICLE

CALMING THE MIND THROUGH CONSCIOUS BREATHING

A calm mind is worth its weight in gold, especially in this day and age. There are more bills, emails, tweets, kids running around and relationships in need of time than ever before. Everybody needs to learn how to catch their breath and relax.  Techniques using the breath to calm the mind have been around forever. While these techniques are widely known and accessible, many people feel they don’t even have the time to learn about them, let alone develop a daily practice.

….FULL ARTICLE

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Better understanding of the type of depression a person experiences couldi mprove the effectiveness of treatment choices and the management of depressive symptoms. Depression is typically diagnosed based on verbalized symptoms patients experience. This relates to the way the symptoms are assessed and the accuracy of patient reporting.


Conor Liston, M.D., a professor of neuroscience and psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York, reports his research team, using brain scans, has identified four unique subtypes of clinical depression based on distinct patterns of abnormal brain connectivity. Their findings appear currently in Nature Medicine (December 2016).


“The four subtypes of depression that we discovered vary in terms of their clinical symptoms but, more importantly, they differ in their responses to treatment,” said Liston. For psychiatric care and treatment, using brain scans may assist mental health professionals in understanding the nature of a patient’s depression.


This collaborative study included 1,180 functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) brain scans of patients with clinical depression and healthy controls from across the country. Researchers from Weill Cornell Medicine and seven other institutions analyzed the scans and identified biomarkers linked with depression by assigning statistical weights

CURRENT RESEARCH REVEALS FOUR DEPRESSION SUBTYPES

to abnormal brain connections. They then predicted the probability the abnormal connections belonged to a particular subtype versus another. The study showed distinct patterns of abnormal connectivity in the brain differentiated among the four subtypes and were linked with specific symptoms. Reduced connectivity in the brain region that regulates fear-related behavior and reappraisal of negative emotional stimuli, for example, was most severe in two of the four subtypes, which demonstrated increased anxiety. The researchers believe their findings may be useful for identifying patients most likely to benefit from targeted neuro-stimulation therapies. In the past, efforts to characterize depression by looking at groups of verbalized symptoms that tend to co-occur and then testing neurophysiological links have produced inconsistent results.


Sources and Resources:


•  Drysdale, A.T., Grosenick, L., Downar, J., et al. (2016) Resting-state connectivity biomarkers define neurophysiological subtypes of depression. Nature Medicine, 2016 December 5.

•  Neuroimaging categorizes for depression subtypes. Weill Cornell Medicine press release, Dec. 5, 2016.

DR. THOMAS W. MILLER, PH.D, ABPP

Thomas W. Miller, Ph.D., ABPP, is a professor emeritus and senior research scientist, Center for Health, Intervention and Prevention, University of Connecticut; retired service chief from the VA Medical Center; and tenured professor in the Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, University of Kentucky.

more articles by Dr thomas w. miller