Author Affiliation: Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Brown University School of Medicine, Providence, RI.
During the past decade, evidence from research on mood disorders has
demonstrated that remission is the optimal outcome of treatment. However,
there continues to be considerable variability in the specific characteristics
that are accepted as indicators of remission. Increasing knowledge of mood
disorders and their underlying mechanisms may allow for the development of
a new diagnostic and assessment system that no longer is based solely on symptoms
and other descriptive phenomena. Continued advances in neuroscience may allow
for more knowledge of the underlying neurobiological status and more accurate
assessments of the underlying disease state and response to treatment, thus
enabling physicians to use treatments that will most effectively bring patients
back to euthymia and a truly disease-free healthy state. Until then, remission
should continue to be based on the descriptive and experiential phenomena
of symptoms and psychosocial functioning.
Keller MB. Past, Present, and Future Directions for Defining Optimal Treatment Outcome in DepressionRemission and Beyond. JAMA. 2003;289(23):3152-3160. doi:10.1001/jama.289.23.3152