In a well-defined sample, we sought to determine what clinical variables, some of potential nosological relevance, influence subsequent course following prospectively observed initial episodes of hypomania or mania (H/M).
We identified 108 individuals in the National Institute of Mental Health Collaborative Depression Study diagnosed with unipolar major depression at intake who subsequently developed H/M. We assessed time to repeat H/M based on whether one had been started on an antidepressant or electroconvulsive therapy within eight weeks of developing H/M, had longer episodes, or had a family history of bipolar disorder.
Modeling age of onset, treatment-associated H/M, family history of bipolar disorder, duration of index H/M episode, and psychosis in Cox regression analysis, family history of bipolar disorder (n = 21) was strongly associated with repeat episodes of H/M [hazard ratio (HR) = 2.01, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.06–3.83, p = 0.03]. Those with treatment-associated episodes (n = 12) were less likely to experience subsequent episodes of H/M, though this was not significant in the multivariate model (HR = 0.25, 95% CI: 0.06–1.05, p = 0.06). These individuals also had a later age of onset for affective illness and were more likely to be depressed. Duration of illness with a temporal resolution of one week, psychosis, and age of onset were not associated with time to repeat H/M episode.
Family history of bipolar disorder influences course of illness even after an initial H/M episode. In this select sample, treatment-associated H/M did not appear to convey the same risk for a course of illness characterized by recurrent H/M episodes.
bipolar disorder; depressive disorder; antidepressants; prospective studies
To assess the relative efficacy of antidepressant medication, alone and in combination with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), on comorbid symptoms of anxiety, attention, and disruptive behavior disorders in participants in the Treatment of Resistant Depression in Adolescents (TORDIA) trial.
Adolescents with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)–resistant depression (N = 334) were randomly assigned to a medication switch alone (to another SSRI or to venlafaxine) or to a medication switch plus CBT. Anxiety, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and disruptive behavior disorder (DBD) symptoms were assessed by psychiatric interview and self-report at regular intervals between baseline and 24 weeks. The differential effects of medication and of CBT, and the impact of remission on the course of comorbid symptoms and diagnoses, were assessed using generalized linear mixed models.
Remission was associated with a greater reduction in scalar measures of anxiety, ADHD, and DBDs, and a greater decrease in the rate of diagnosed anxiety disorders. The correlations between the changes in symptoms of depression on the CDRS-R and anxiety, ADHD, and oppositional symptoms were modest, ranging from r = 0.12 to r = 0.28. There were no significant differential treatment effects on diagnoses, or corresponding symptoms.
The achievement of remission had a beneficial effect on anxiety, ADHD, and DBD symptoms, regardless of the type of treatment received. There were no differential effects of medication or CBT on outcome, except for a nonsignificant trend that those adolescents treated with SSRIs showed a greater decrease in rates of comorbid DBDs relative to those treated with venlafaxine.
antidepressants; cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT); comorbidity; Treatment of Resistant Depression in Adolescents (TORDIA); secondary outcomes
The study examined the long-term course of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) by analyzing rates of recurrence and the predictive value of comorbid psychiatric disorders and psychosocial functioning.
This study is based on diagnostic assessments administered at intake and subsequent follow-up interviews over a period of 15 years in a sample of 90 anxiety-disordered patients with comorbid PTSD who participated in the Harvard Brown Anxiety Research project (HARP). Kaplan–Meier life table analysis revealed a 0.20 probability of full remission during the 15 years of follow-up.
Latent growth model (LGM) analysis revealed that the number of trauma exposures was a predictor of a worse course of PTSD but only during some intervals of the 15-year follow-up. Subjects with full social phobia were more likely to experience worsening of PTSD over time in comparison with subjects with less severe social phobia. Role functioning in the areas of household and employment was a significant predictor of a declining course of PTSD.
These findings revealed the dynamic nature of the predictive value of traumatic experiences, the deleterious effect of social phobia and the long term effect of psychosocial functioning on the course of PTSD. Implications for treatment planning and development of interventions for PTSD are discussed.
PTSD; longitudinal studies; long-term course; clinical predictors of PTSD; social anxiety; psychosocial functioning
In this report, we conducted a secondary analysis of the Treatment of SSRI-Resistant Depression in Adolescents (TORDIA) study to explore the impact of specific cognitive–behavioral therapy (CBT) treatment components on outcome. In TORDIA, 334 youths (ages 12 to 18 years) with major depressive disorder who had failed to respond to an adequate course of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) medication were randomized to a medication switch (either to an alternative SSRI or venlafaxine) with or without 12 weeks of adjunctive CBT. Participants who had more than 9 CBT sessions were 2.5 times more likely to have adequate treatment response than those who had 9 or fewer sessions. CBT participants who received problem-solving and social skills treatment components, controlling for number of sessions and other confounding variables, were 2.3 and 2.6 times, respectively, more likely to have a positive response. These preliminary findings underscore the importance of receiving an adequate number of sessions to attain an adequate clinical response. Finally, social skills and problem solving may be active elements in CBT for adolescent depression and should be considered in treatment by those working with seriously depressed youths.
cognitive–behavioral therapy; adolescent depression; treatment components
Psychosocial outcomes from the Prevention of Recurrent Episodes of Depression with Venlafaxine ER for Two Years (PREVENT) study were evaluated.
Adult outpatients with recurrent major depressive disorder (MDD) and response or remission following 6-month continuation treatment with venlafaxine extended release (ER) were randomized to receive venlafaxine ER or placebo for 1 year. Patients without recurrence on venlafaxine ER during year 1 were randomized to venlafaxine ER or placebo for year 2. Psychosocial functioning was assessed using the Quality of Life Enjoyment and Satisfaction Questionnaire—Short Form (Q-LES-Q), Life EnjoymentScale—Short Version (LES-S), Social Adjustment Scale—Self-Report (SAS-SR) total and individual factors, Short Form Health Survey (SF-36) (vitality, social functioning, and role function-emotional items), and Longitudinal Interval Follow-up Evaluation (LIFE).
At year 1 end, better overall psychosocial functioning was seen among patients randomly assigned to venlafaxine ER (n=129) vs placebo (n=129), with significant differences at end point on SF-36 role function-emotional, Q-LES-Q, and SAS-SR total, and work, house work, social/leisure, and extended-family factor scores (p≤0.05). At year 2 end, significant differences favored venlafaxine ER (n=43) vs placebo (n=40)on SF-36 vitality and rolefunction-emotional, Q-LES-Q, LES-S, LIFE, and SAS-SR total, social/leisure, and extended-family factor scores (p≤0.05).
Patients with chronic MDD or treatment resistance were excluded and long-term specialist care was a financial incentive for treatment compliance. Discontinuation-related adverse events may have compromised the integrity of the treatment blind.
For patients with recurrent MDD, 2 years’ maintenance therapy with venlafaxine ER may improve psychosocial functioning vs placebo.
Venlafaxine extended release; Psychosocial outcomes; Major depressive disorder; Maintenance treatment
To assess whether relative severity of irritability symptoms versus elation symptoms in mania is stable and predicts subsequent illness course in youth with DSM-IV bipolar I or II disorder or operationally defined bipolar disorder not otherwise specified.
Investigators used the Kiddie Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia for School-Age Children to assess the most severe lifetime manic episode in bipolar youth aged 7–17 years who were recruited from 2000 to 2006 as part of the Course and Outcomes of Bipolar Youth prospective cohort study (N = 361), conducted at university-affiliated mental health clinics. Subjects with at least 4 years of follow-up (N = 309) were categorized as irritable-only (n = 30), elated-only (n = 42), or both irritable and elated (n = 237) at baseline. Stability of this categorization over follow-up was the primary outcome. The course of mood symptoms and episodes, risk of suicide attempt, and functioning over follow-up were also compared between baseline groups.
Most subjects experienced both irritability and elation during follow-up, and agreement between baseline and follow-up group assignment did not exceed that expected by chance (κ = 0.03; 95% CI, −0.06 to 0.12). Elated-only subjects were most likely to report the absence of both irritability and elation symptoms at every follow-up assessment (35.7%, versus 26.7% of irritable-only subjects and 16.9% of those with both irritability and elation; P = .01). Baseline groups experienced mania or hypomania for a similar proportion of the follow-up period, but irritable-only subjects experienced depression for a greater proportion of the follow-up period than did subjects who were both irritable and elated (53.9% versus 39.7%, respectively; P = .01). The groups did not otherwise differ by course of mood episode duration, polarity, bipolar diagnostic type, suicide attempt risk, or functional impairment.
Most bipolar youth eventually experienced both irritability and elation irrespective of history. Irritable-only youth were at similar risk for mania but at greater risk for depression compared with elated-only youth and youth who had both irritability and elation symptoms.
The main aim of the present novel reanalysis of archival data was to compare the time to remission during 12 weeks of treatment of chronic depression following antidepressant medication (n = 218), psychotherapy (n = 216), and their combination (n = 222). Cox regression survival analyses revealed that the combination of medication and psychotherapy produced full remission from chronic depression more rapidly than either of the single modality treatments, which did not differ from each other. Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis was used to explore predictors (treatment group, demographic, clinical, and psychosocial) of remission. For those receiving the combination treatment, the most likely to succeed were those with low baseline depression (24-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression [HRSD; M. Hamilton, 1967] score < 26) and those with high depression scores but low anxiety (HRSD ≥ 26 and Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale [M. Hamilton, 1959] <14). Both profiles were associated with at least 40% chance of attaining full remission. The model did not identify predictors for those receiving medication or psychotherapy alone, and it did not distinguish between the 2 monotherapies. The authors conclude that combined antidepressant medications and psychotherapy result in faster full remission of chronic forms of major depressive disorder.
chronic depression; remission; psychotherapy; antidepressant medications; combined treatments
Patients (30–50%) with non-psychotic major depression will not respond despite an adequate trial of antidepressant medication. This study evaluated risperidone as an augmenting agent for patients who failed or only partially responded to an adequate trial of an antidepressant medication.
Ninety-seven patients with unipolar non-psychotic major depression who were not responsive to antidepressant monotherapy were randomized to risperidone (0.5–3 mg/day) or placebo augmentation in a four-week, double-blind, placebo controlled treatment trial. The primary outcome measure was remission defined by a score of ≤10 on the Montgomery–Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS). Secondary outcomes measures were the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression, the Clinician Global Impression of Severity scale and the overall satisfaction item of the Quality of Life and Enjoyment Questionnaire.
Subjects in both treatment groups improved significantly over time. The odds of remitting were significantly better for patients in the risperidone vs. placebo arm (OR = 3.33, p = .011). At the end of 4 weeks of treatment 52% of the risperidone augmentation group remitted (MADRS ≤ 10) compared to 24% of the placebo augmentation group (CMH(1) = 6.48, p = .011), but the two groups were converging. Patients in the risperidone group also reported significantly more improvement in quality-of-life than patients in the placebo group. There were no between-group differences in the number of adverse events reported, however, weight gain was significantly higher in the group receiving risperidone.
Augmentation of an antidepressant with risperidone for patients with difficult-to-treat depression leads to more rapid response and a higher remission rate and better quality-of-life.
Antidepressants; Antipsychotic; Clinical drug studies; Mood disorders – unipolar
Although obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is typically described as a chronic condition, relatively little is known about the naturalistic, longitudinal course of the disorder. The purpose of the current study was to examine the probability of OCD remission and recurrence as well as to explore demographic and clinical predictors of remission.
This study uses data from the Harvard/Brown Anxiety Disorders Research Program, which is a prospective, naturalistic, longitudinal study of anxiety disorders. Diagnoses were established by means of a clinical interview at study intake. One hundred thirteen Harvard/Brown Anxiety Disorders Research Program participants with OCD were included in the study; all had a history of at least 1 other anxiety disorder. Assessments were conducted at 6-month and/or annual intervals during 15 years of follow-up.
Survival analyses showed that the probability of OCD remission was .16 at year 1, .25 at year 5, .31 at year 10, and .42 at year 15. For those who remitted from OCD, the probability of recurrence was .07 at year 1, .15 by year 3, and by year 5, it reached .25 and remained at .25 through year 15. In predictors of course, those who were married and those without comorbid major depressive disorder (MDD) were more likely to remit from OCD. By year 15, 51% of those without MDD remitted from OCD compared to only 20% of those with MDD.
In the short term, OCD appears to have a chronic course with low rates of remission. However, in the long term, a fair number of people recover from the disorder, and, for those who experience remission from OCD, the probability of recurrence is fairly low.
Despite evidence indicating high morbidity associated with pediatric bipolar disorder (BP), little is known about the prevalence and clinical correlates of suicidal behavior among this population.
To investigate the prevalence of suicidal behavior among children and adolescents with BP, and to compare subjects with a history of suicide attempt to those without on demographic, clinical, and familial risk factors.
Subjects were 405 children and adolescents aged 7–17 years, who fulfilled DSM-IV criteria for BPI (n = 236) or BPII (n = 29), or operationalized criteria for BP not otherwise specified (BP NOS; n = 140) via the Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia for School-Aged Children. As part of a multi-site longitudinal study of pediatric BP (Course and Outcome of Bipolar Youth), demographic, clinical, and family history variables were measured at intake via clinical interview with the subject and a parent/guardian.
Nearly one-third of BP patients had a lifetime history of suicide attempt. Attempters, compared with non-attempters, were older, and more likely to have a lifetime history of mixed episodes, psychotic features, and BPI. Attempters were more likely to have a lifetime history of comorbid substance use disorder, panic disorder, non-suicidal self-injurious behavior, family history of suicide attempt, history of hospitalization, and history of physical and/or sexual abuse. Multivariate analysis found that the following were the most robust set of predictors for suicide attempt: mixed episodes, psychosis, hospitalization, self-injurious behavior, panic disorder, and substance use disorder.
These findings indicate that children and adolescents with BP exhibit high rates of suicidal behavior, with more severe features of BP illness and comorbidity increasing the risk for suicide attempt. Multiple clinical factors emerged distinguishing suicide attempters from non-attempters. These clinical factors should be considered in both assessment and treatment of pediatric BP.
pediatric bipolar disorder; risk factors; suicide; suicide attempt
Many youth with depression do not respond to initial treatment with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), and this is associated with higher costs. More effective treatment for these youth may be cost-effective.
To evaluate the incremental cost-effectiveness over 24 weeks of combined cognitive behavior therapy plus switch to a different antidepressant medication vs medication switch only in adolescents who continued to have depression despite adequate initial treatment with an SSRI.
Randomized controlled trial.
Six US academic and community clinics.
Three hundred thirty-four patients aged 12 to 18 years with SSRI-resistant depression.
Participants were randomly assigned to (1) switch to a different medication only or (2) switch to a different medication plus cognitive behavior therapy.
Main Outcome Measures
Clinical outcomes were depression-free days (DFDs), depression-improvement days (DIDs), and quality-adjusted life-years based on DFDs (DFD-QALYs). Costs of intervention, nonprotocol services, and families were included.
Combined treatment achieved 8.3 additional DFDs (P=.03), 0.020 more DFD-QALYs (P=.03), and 11.0 more DIDs (P=.04). Combined therapy cost $1633 more (P=.01). Cost per DFD was $188 (incremental cost-effectiveness ratio [ICER]=$188; 95% confidence interval [CI], −$22 to $1613), $142 per DID (ICER=$142; 95% CI, −$14 to $2529), and $78 948 per DFD-QALY (ICER=$78 948; 95% CI, −$9261 to $677 448). Cost-effectiveness acceptability curve analyses suggest a 61% probability that combined treatment is more cost-effective at a willingness to pay $100 000 per QALY. Combined treatment had a higher net benefit for subgroups of youth without a history of abuse, with lower levels of hopelessness, and with comorbid conditions.
For youth with SSRI-resistant depression, combined treatment decreases the number of days with depression and is more costly. Depending on a decision maker’s willingness to pay, combined therapy may be cost-effective, particularly for some subgroups.
In contrast to “remission” from an episode of major depressive disorder (MDD), for which there is general agreement in the literature, the optimal definition of “recovery” from MDD is uncertain. Previous definitions of recovery have used inconsistent thresholds for symptom severity and duration of wellness. To address the effects of duration and degree of recovery from an episode of MDD on recurrence risk, and the impact of maintenance antidepressant treatment on recurrence, we analyzed 258 patients from a randomized, double-blind study of outpatients with recurrent MDD. All patients had responded to 8½ months of venlafaxine extended release and were subsequently randomized to receive venlafaxine ER or placebo during 2 consecutive 12-month maintenance phases. Four definitions of recovery were used to evaluate recovery rates and time to recurrence: (1) 17-item Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAM-D17) total score ≤3 with duration ≥120 days; (2) HAM-D17 ≤3 with duration ≥56 days; (3) HAM-D17 ≤7 with duration ≥120 days; and (4) HAM-D17 ≤7 with duration ≥56 days. Recovery definitions using lower symptom severity and longer duration thresholds produced lower rates of recurrence. Patients on placebo were more likely to have a recurrence than patients on venlafaxine ER, with hazard ratio (HR) ranging from 2.5 among patients who recovered by the most relaxed criteria (definition 4), to 5.3 among patients who recovered by the most stringent criteria (definition 1). We conclude that protection against recurrence derives from the degree and duration of recovery, particularly for patients maintained on antidepressant medication.
Antidepressants; Recurrence; Venlafaxine; Forecasting; Placebo
We conducted a secondary analysis of data from the Prevention of Recurrent Episodes of Depression With Venlafaxine Extended Release (ER) for Two Years (PREVENT) trial to evaluate whether discrepancies between clinician and patient ratings of depression severity were predictive of response, remission, and recurrence during treatment for a depressive episode. Patients who self-rated depression severity in concordance with the clinician (“concordant patients”) were defined as having a standardized patient-rated Inventory of Depressive Symptoms-Self Report (IDS-SR30) score minus standardized clinician-rated Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAM-D17) score <1 SD from mean. Non-concordant patients (“underrating patients” [−1 SD], “overrating patients” [+1 SD]) were identified. Cohorts were compared for remission and response on the HAM-D17, Clinician Global Impression–Severity (CGI-S), and IDS-SR30 during acute and continuation therapy and time to recurrence during maintenance therapy. During acute treatment female patients were more likely to overrate their depression severity compared to the clinician; older age predicted overrating during continuation treatment. Overrating patients had a slower onset of response on the HAM-D17 during acute treatment (P = 0.004). There were no differences between cohorts for remission or response on the HAM-D17 or CGI-S. Overrating patients at week 10 had lower remission and response rates on the IDS-SR30 during continuation therapy (32% and 50%, respectively; P ≤ 0.001) compared with underrating patients (76%, 77%) or concordant patients (64%, 78%). Patient concordance at the end of continuation therapy did not predict recurrence during maintenance therapy, indicating that patient rating scales may be useful in tracking recurrence during maintenance therapy. Poor agreement between patient- and clinician-ratings of depression severity is primarily a state phenomenon, although it is trait-like for some patients.
Depression; Psychiatric status rating scales; Reliability and validity; Outcome assessment; Treatment outcome; Anxiety
The phenomenology of bipolar I disorder affects treatment and prognosis.
To describe the duration of bipolar I mood episodes and factors associated with recovery from these episodes.
Subjects with Research Diagnostic Criteria bipolar I disorder were prospectively followed up for as long as 25 years. The probability of recovery over time from multiple successive mood episodes was examined with survival analytic techniques, including a mixed-effects grouped-time survival model.
Five US academic medical centers.
Two hundred nineteen subjects with bipolar I disorder.
Main Outcome Measures
Level of psychopathology was assessed with the Longitudinal Interval Follow-up Evaluation every 6 months for the first 5 years of follow-up and annually thereafter.
The median duration of bipolar I mood episodes was 13 weeks. More than 75% of the subjects recovered from their mood episodes within 1 year of onset. The probability of recovery was significantly less for an episode with severe onset (psychosis or severe psychosocial impairment in week 1 of the episode) (hazard ratio [HR]=0.746; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.578–0.963; P=.02) and for subjects with greater cumulative morbidity (total number of years spent ill with any mood episode) (HR=0.917; 95% CI, 0.886–0.948; P<.001). Compared with the probability of recovery from a major depressive episode, there was a significantly greater probability of recovery from an episode of mania (HR=1.713; 95% CI, 1.373–2.137; P<.001), hypomania (HR=4.502; 95% CI, 3.466–5.849; P<.001), or minor depression (HR = 2.027; 95% CI, 1.622–2.534; P<.001) and, conversely, a significantly reduced probability of recovery from a cycling episode (switching from one pole to the other without an intervening period of recovery) (HR=0.438; 95% CI, 0.351–0.548; P<.001).
The median duration of bipolar I mood episodes was 13 weeks, and the probability of recovery was significantly decreased for cycling episodes, mood episodes with severe onset, and subjects with greater cumulative morbidity.
There is increasing evidence that subsyndromal manic symptoms occur frequently during bipolar major depressive episodes (MDEs) and may be a subtle form of ‘depressive mixed state.’ This paper examines the prevalence and clinical characteristics of MDEs with subsyndromal manic symptoms. The specific effects of overt irritability and psychomotor agitation are examined.
Bipolar (type I or II) patients with an MDE at intake (N=142) were compared based on the presence or absence of concurrent subsyndromal manic symptoms. The groups were further subdivided by the presence of symptoms of overt irritability and/or psychomotor agitation.
Subsyndromal manic symptoms during bipolar MDEs were highly prevalent (76.1%), and were associated with significantly increased severity of depression/dysphoria in the intake episode, longer episode duration, and more suicidal ideation and behavior (past, current, and during long-term follow-up). Overt irritability and psychomotor agitation were the most prevalent subsyndromal manic symptoms (co-occurring in 57% and 39% of MDEs, respectively), and accounted for most of the negative effects associated with subsyndromal manic symptoms.
The findings need to be confirmed in larger samples, which also examine the relationship to adequate antidepressant and/or mood stabilizing treatment.
The presence of one or more subsyndromal manic symptoms appears to be the modal presentation of bipolar MDEs and a marker for a subtle form of bipolar mixed depressive state. In particular, patients with symptoms of overt irritability and/or psychomotor agitation should be monitored closely to avoid serious clinical outcomes such as longer affective episodes, exacerbation of manic symptoms syndromal mania, and heightened suicidality.
Bipolar; Major depressive episodes; Subsyndromal manic symptoms; Irritability; Psychomotor agitation
There is evidence that negative affect (NA) and anxiety sensitivity (AS) predict the development of anxiety disorders, particularly panic disorder (PD). The main purpose of this study was to examine whether NA and AS will also predict the clinical course of PD.
Participants were 136 individuals with a DSM-III-R diagnosis of PD (with or without agoraphobia) enrolled in a naturalistic and longitudinal study of anxiety disorders, the Harvard/Brown Anxiety Research Project (HARP). Participants were administered the Anxiety Sensitivity Index and the Negative Affect Scales of the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule-Expanded Form (PANAS-X-NA) and their percentage of time in PD episode was followed for 1 year after the administration of the measures.
Multiple regression analyses indicated that AS, but not NA, was a significant predictor of percentage of time in PD episode after controlling for previous time in PD episodes, comorbid depression, other anxiety disorders, and exposure to psychopharmacological and behavioral treatments. As expected, the Physical Concerns subscale of the Anxiety Sensitivity Index had a significant independent contribution in predicting the course of the disorder.
Overall, these findings suggest that AS, as a unique construct, may be predictive of the amount of time patients are in episode of PD.
panic disorder; anxiety sensitivity; negative affect; clinical course; anxiety disorders; longitudinal studies; risk factors
The objective of this study was to evaluate the long-term efficacy of venlafaxine extended release (ER) ≤225 mg/ day in patients with recurrent major depressive disorder (MDD). In this double-blind trial, outpatients with recurrent MDD (N=1096) were randomized to 10 weeks of acute-phase treatment with venlafaxine ER (75–300 mg/ day) or fluoxetine (20–60 mg/day) followed by a 6-month continuation phase and two consecutive 12-month maintenance phases. At the start of each maintenance period, venlafaxine ER responders were randomized to double-blind venlafaxine ER or placebo. In this analysis, data from responders to acute and continuation treatment were analyzed during the combined maintenance phases while receiving venlafaxine ER ≤225 mg/day. Failure to maintain response was defined as an increase in maintenance dose to 300 mg/day or recurrence. Differences were calculated using Kaplan–Meier methods and compared using log-rank tests. Continuation-phase responders (n =114) receiving venlafaxine ER ≤225 mg/ day comprised the analysis population (venlafaxine ER: n= 55; placebo: n= 59). The estimated probability for remaining well across 24 months of maintenance treatment was 67% for venlafaxine ER and 41% for placebo (P = 0.007). Venlafaxine ER effectively maintained response at doses ≤225 mg/day for up to 2.5 years in patients with recurrent MDD. The findings are consistent with those of the full data set.
dosing; long-term efficacy; recurrence prevention; selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor/serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor
The degree of agreement between patient- and clinician-rated scales of depressive severity varies widely. This study analyzed agreement between commonly used depression rating scales in the Prevention of Recurrent Episodes of Depression with Venlafaxine Extended Release (ER) for Two Years (PREVENT) trial.
The PREVENT trial was a multiphase, randomized, double-blind study of patients with recurrent major depressive disorder. This secondary analysis evaluated acute (10 weeks) and continuation phase (6 months) data. Pearson correlation coefficients at each acute-phase (weekly) and continuation-phase (monthly) visit were calculated for patient-rated (30-item Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology-Self-Rated [IDS-SR30] and clinician-rated (17-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression [HAM-D17] and Clinical Global Impressions-Severity [CGI-S]) measures and for response and remission.
Data from 1,047 patients were analyzed. The respective correlation coefficients at baseline, week 10, and month 6 were: IDS-SR30: HAM-D17: 0.46, 0.75, 0.70; and for IDS-SR30: CGI-S 0.28, 0.67, 0.65. Agreement between IDS-SR30- and HAM-D17-defined remission and response was relatively poor: week 10, 0.52 and 0.34, respectively; month 6, 0.45 and 0.32, respectively.
These findings suggest that patient-rated measures of depression severity do not correspond strongly with clinician ratings, and are particularly poor prior to the initiation of treatment.
Major depressive disorder; Antidepressants; Outcomes assessment; Psychiatric status rating scales; Ratings; Clinical trials as a topic; Inventory of depressive symptoms
This report prospectively examines the course of body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) for up to 8 years in a sample of 514 participants in the Harvard/Brown Anxiety Research Project, a naturalistic, longitudinal study of anxiety disorders. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed.) BDD was assessed with a reliable semi-structured measure. For participants with BDD, severity of BDD symptoms was assessed with the Longitudinal Interval Follow-up Evaluation Psychiatric Status Rating scale. At the initial assessment, 17 participants (3.3%; 95% confidence interval = 1.8%–4.8%) had current BDD; 22 (4.3%; 95% confidence interval = 2.6%–6.1%) had lifetime BDD. Participants with BDD had significantly lower Global Assessment Scale scores than those without BDD, indicating poorer functioning. The probability of full recovery from BDD was 0.76, and probability of recurrence, once remitted, was 0.14 over the 8 years. In conclusion, among individuals ascertained for anxiety disorders, the probability of recovering from BDD was relatively high and probability of BDD recurrence was low.
Body dysmorphic disorder; anxiety disorders; course; recovery; recurrence
Stressful life events (SLEs) are associated with the onset of psychiatric disorders but little is known about the effects of SLEs on individuals already diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, particularly generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) in which worry about life events is a defining characteristic. This study examined the impact of SLEs on relapse in adults already diagnosed with GAD.
Data are obtained from the Harvard/Brown Anxiety Research Project (HARP), a naturalistic longitudinal study of adults with a current or past history of anxiety disorders. One hundred and twelve adults recovered from an episode of GAD and 27 subsequently relapsed during the study. Eight categories of SLEs were assessed via interview and were examined as predictors of GAD relapse.
An increased total number of SLEs was associated with a higher cumulative probability of relapse into episode of GAD and there was a nonsignificant statistical trend indicating specific categories of SLEs including health, death, and family/friends/household were related to an increased probability of relapse into episodes of GAD.
SLEs impact the course of GAD and certain types of stressors may be more relevant to symptomatology than others. The change and uncertainty associated with SLEs may exacerbate existing worry tendencies even among those who have recovered from GAD.
anxiety; course; adults; longitudinal; psychiatric
There is little work on the effect of school on response to treatment of depression, with available research suggesting that children and adolescents with school difficulties are less likely to respond to fluoxetine compared with those with no school difficulties.
Depressed adolescents in the Treatment of Resistant Depression in Adolescents study, who had not responded to a previous adequate selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) trial, were randomly assigned to one of the following: another SSRI, venlafaxine, another SSRI + cognitive behavior therapy (CBT), or venlafaxine + CBT. Participants were classified into four groups depending on whether their enrollment in the study and end of treatment was during school or summer vacation.
Controlling for baseline differences, adolescents ending their 12-week treatment during summer vacation had odds 1.7 times (95% confidence interval = 1.02-2.8, p = .04) greater to have an adequate response as those ending their treatment while being in school. In addition, adequate depression response was associated with fewer school problems at week 12 (scores <5 versus scores ≥5: odds ratio = 3.3, 95% confidence interval = 1.9-5.8, p < .001). There was a significant interaction between school difficulties and timing of treatment, with the lowest rates of response being among adolescents having school difficulties and ending their treatment during the active school year.
School problems are relevant to treatment response in depressed adolescents and should be incorporated into the treatment plan. These findings also suggest that the time of the year might need to be taken into consideration for analysis of clinical trials in school-aged youth. Clinical trial registration information—Treatment of SSRI-Resistant Depression in Adolescents (TORDIA); http://www.clinicaltrials.gov; NCT00018902.
adolescent depression; therapy; school problems; time variation
We describe the rationale, method, and intake demographic and clinical findings of the Harvard/Brown Anxiety Research Project-Phase II (HARP-II). HARP-II is the first prospective, observational, longitudinal study to describe the characteristics and course of anxiety in African American, Latino, and Non-Latino White individuals. Participants met criteria for at least one of the following disorders: Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Social Phobia, Panic Disorder with or without Agoraphobia, Agoraphobia without history of Panic Disorder, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Initial intake data, collected between 2004 and 2011, are presented for 165 African American, 150 Latino, and 172 Non-Latino White participants. Participants evidenced substantial psychiatric comorbidity (mean number of Axis I disorders = 3.4), and moderate to severe symptoms and functional impairment. HARP-II will examine clinical course, in the context of potential socio-cultural and individual moderators (e.g., discrimination, acculturation, negative affect). Results should lead to improved understanding, prognostics, and treatment of anxiety in diverse populations.
longitudinal study; anxiety; African American; Latino; Hispanic; ethnicity; minority
Nonadherence to antidepressant treatment may contribute to poor outcome and to suicidal adverse events in adolescent depression. We examine the relationship between adherence and both clinical response and suicidal events in participants in the Treatment of Resistant Depression in Adolescents (TORDIA) study.
The relationship between adherence to medication and clinical outcome was assessed in 190 treatment-resistant depressed adolescents who were randomized to one of four cells: switch to another selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), switch to venlafaxine, or either of these two medication switches plus cognitive behavioral therapy. Plasma levels of antidepressant drug and metabolites were determined after 6 and 12 weeks of treatment. A twofold or greater variation in the dose-adjusted concentration of drug plus metabolites (level/dose ratio [LDR]) was defined as nonadherence. Nonadherence was also determined by clinician pill counts (CPC) of the proportion of prescribed pills that were unused and was defined as having greater than 30% of the prescribed pills remaining.
LDR and CPC showed low concordance. LDR was unrelated to clinical response. CPC adherence was related to a higher response rate overall (adherent, 63.0% versus nonadherent, 47.2%, p = .03). Approximately half (50.8%) of the sample surveyed showed evidence of nonadherence by CPC. Neither measure of adherence was related to the occurrence of suicidal events or to the pace of decline in suicidal ideation.
Clinician pill counts may be a relevant measure of adherence that is related to outcome under formal clinical trial conditions in depressed adolescents. Nonadherence appears to be a common and significant source of treatment nonresponse.
depression; medication adherence; antidepressants
To identify distinct depressive symptom trajectories in the TORDIA study and determine their correlates.
Latent Class Growth Analysis (LCGA) using the Children's Depression Rating Scale—Revised (CDRS-R) through 72 weeks from intake.
3 classes were identified: (1) little change in symptomatic status (“NO”), comprising 24.9% of participants, with a 72-week remission rate of 25.3%; (2) slow, steady improvement (“SLOW”), comprising 47.9% of participants, with a remission rate of 60.0%, and (3) rapid symptom response (“GO”), comprising 27.2% of participants, with a remission rate of 85.7%. Higher baseline CDRS-R (p<0.001) and poorer functioning (p=0.03) were the strongest discriminators between NO and GO. Higher baseline CDRS (p<0.001) and scores on the Mania Rating Scale (MRS) (p=0.01) were the strongest discriminators between SLOW and GO. Other variables differentiating GO from both NO and from SLOW, were better baseline functioning, lower hopelessness, and lower family conflict. Both NO and SLOW showed increases on the MRS over time compared to GO (ps≤0.04), and increasing MRS was strongly associated with lack of remission by 72 weeks (p=0.02).
High rate of open treatment by the end of the follow-up period creates difficulty in drawing clear inferences about the long-term impact of initial randomization.
Along with depressive severity, sub-syndromal manic symptoms, at baseline, and over time emerged as important predictors and correlates of poor outcome in this sample. Further research is needed on the treatment of severe depression, and on the assessment and management of sub-syndromal manic symptoms in treatment resistant depression.
To identify symptom dimensions of depression that predict recovery among SSRI-treatment resistant adolescents undergoing second-step treatment.
The Treatment of Resistant Depression in Adolescents (TORDIA) trial included 334 SSRI-treatment resistant youth randomized to a medication switch, or a medication switch plus CBT. This study examined five established symptom dimensions (Child Depression Rating Scale-Revised) at baseline as they predicted recovery over 24 weeks of acute and continuation treatment. The two indices of recovery that were evaluated were time to remission and number of depression-free days.
Multivariate analyses examining all five depression symptom dimensions simultaneously indicated that Anhedonia was the only dimension to predict a longer time to remission, and also the only dimension to predict fewer depression-free days. In addition, when Anhedonia and CDRS-total score were evaluated simultaneously, Anhedonia continued to uniquely predict longer time to remission and fewer depression-free days.
Anhedonia may represent an important negative prognostic indicator among treatment resistant depressed adolescents. Further research is needed to elucidate neurobehavioral underpinnings of anhedonia, and to test treatments that target anhedonia in the context of overall treatment of depression.
depression; adolescence; treatment-resistant; cognitive-behavioral therapy; clinical trial