Send to

Choose Destination
J Clin Psychiatry. 2000 Apr;61(4):268-75.

Social functioning in depression: a review.

Author information

Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston 77555-0188, USA.



This article reviews the available data on social functioning in depression and provides clinical guidelines and opinion on this important and expanding field.


A MEDLINE search was conducted to identify all English-language articles (1988-1999) using the search terms depression and social functioning, depression and social adjustment, depression and psychosocial functioning, and social functioning and antidepressant. Further articles were obtained from the bibliographies of relevant articles.


Depressive disorders are frequently associated with significant and pervasive impairments in social functioning, often substantially worse than those experienced by patients with other chronic medical conditions. The enormous personal, social, and economic impact of depression, due in no small part to the associated impairments in social functioning, is often underappreciated. Both pharmacologic and psychotherapeutic approaches can improve social impairments, although there is a lack of extended, randomized controlled trials in this area using consistent assessment criteria.


Despite this lack, it is becoming clear that not all treatments are equally effective in relieving the impaired social functioning associated with depressive disorders. Furthermore, efficacy in relieving the core symptoms of depression does not necessarily guarantee efficacy in relieving impaired social functioning.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.
Loading ...
Support Center