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J Affect Disord. 2006 Oct;95(1-3):79-84. Epub 2006 Jun 6.

The impact of gender, age and depressed state on patients' perspectives of remission.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Brown University School of Medicine, Rhode Island Hospital, Providence, RI, USA.



Current standards for treatment outcome from major depression assess remission solely from the vantage point of symptom resolution. Recent evidence, however, suggests that depressed patients consider factors beyond symptom resolution as important for defining remission. The goal of this study was to examine the influence of three predictors on patients' views of factors important for achieving remission: gender, age and current depressed state (i.e., remitted or depressed).


Five hundred and sixty-two depressed psychiatric outpatients completed a survey assessing the importance of 16 remission factors. Depressed state was assessed by the Standardized Clinical Outcome Rating scale for Depression (SCOR-D), a clinician rated scale that is based on the number of DSM-IV criteria for a major depressive episode and level of psychosocial impairment present during the past week.


Relative to male patients, females showed a greater likelihood for rating remission factors related to emotional stabilization (e.g., achieving emotional control, being able to cope with normal stress) as very important. Relative to younger cohorts, the oldest depressed patients endorsed a greater number of remission factors as very important and emphasized positive mental health states (e.g., feeling satisfied, having a general sense of well-being) more. There were no significant differences between remitted and depressed patients in rating the remission factors' importance.


Perspectives on remission may be differentially perceived by women versus men and by older versus younger depressed patients.


The study was conducted in a single outpatient clinical practice.

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