Prenatal depression and infant development

There is strong evidence that a mother’s depression during pregnancy tends to be associated with later psychological difficulties for her child, including the child’s own depression. Are these later difficulties linked to infant development in utero and so directly related to the prenatal depression? Or are the child’s difficulties more associated with its experiences after birth, perhaps to a continuation of the mother’s depression, postpartum? Recent research suggests some answers to these questions. Read more Prenatal depression and infant development

Remote collaborative care for depression

A study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry looks at the remote provision of mental health care in rural health centres. These centres cannot support a practice-based mental health team and so depressed patients usually depend upon the local doctor and nurse to deliver evidence-based treatment. This compares to larger centres, where on-site mental health practitioners can provide collaborative care.

In this study 364 patients who screened positive for depression were allocated to either solely centre-based care or to receiving additional collaborative care delivered remotely by an off-site team. Follow up at 6, 12 and 18 months showed that the latter group experienced significantly better outcomes.

Medscape carries a short discussion of the study.

Successful and Schizophrenic

A moving account by Elyn R. Saks of building a successful and creative life while experiencing schizophrenia. After a hospitalisation at the age of 28 she was advised that because of her diagnosis she would never lead an independent life. She has since become Associate Dean and Orrin B. Evans Professor of Law, Psychology, and Psychiatry and the Behavioral Sciences at the University of Southern California Gould Law School.