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December 25, 2018

The Challenges of Improving Treatments for Depression

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Clinical, Neuro and Developmental Psychology, Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, the Netherlands
JAMA. 2018;320(24):2529-2530. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.17824

In the past few decades substantial progress has been made in the research and development of treatments for major depression. Many different types of medications and psychotherapy are currently available and rigorous studies have shown that antidepressants are more effective than placebo,1 and several types of psychotherapies are more effective than waiting list or other controls.2 These findings suggest that many patients with depression can be successfully treated. Based on these significant and positive effects, many of these treatments are included in treatment guidelines and are widely used in clinical practice. However, not all patients with depression recover with available treatments and several important challenges need to be resolved to improve existing treatments and to increase the number of patients who benefit from them.

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