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Fortschr Neurol Psychiatr. 1999 Jul;67(7):327-35.

[Vascular depression--a new concise concept?].

[Article in German]

Author information

  • 1Klinik für Psychiatrie und Psychotherapie I, Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universität Frankfurt/M. wetterling@em.uni-frankfurt.de

Abstract

Many studies pointed out that in the elderly depression is underdiagnosed, probably due to the uncharacteristic psychopathologic symptoms. Often elder people complain about somatic disorders and cognitive impairment, sometimes covering the psychopathologic symptoms and hampering diagnostic classification. Cerebrovascular disorders has been considered to be one major cause for depressive mood in the elderly. In a recent paper Alexopoulos et al. (1997) proposed the concept of vascular depression (VD) which is different from that of post-stroke depression established by the group of Robinson and Starkstein. The new concept is critically reviewed with regard of its clinical feasibility. In contrast to the ICD-10 guidelines the vascular depression concept requires no connection between the occurrence of psychopathology and of cerebrovascular disorder. Therefore it appears to be more feasible in clinical practice. However, a differentiation of vascular depression into two subtypes according to the CT/MRI findings seems to be more promising: type I (macroangiopathy) is similar to post-stroke-depression, while type II is characterized by microangiopathy and its clinical description resembles that for vascular depression of Alexopoulos et al. Up to now possible therapeutic consequences have not been investigated. Moreover, the concept of vascular depression basing only on two clinical studies needs further confirmation.

PMID:
10443343
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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