The Australian Scientists Cracking the Genetic Code of Clinical Depression

Two-thirds of Australians with clinical depression have used multiple antidepressants to manage their condition, the nation’s largest study on depression has found. More than 10,000 adults living with the mental illness have so far enrolled in the Australian Genetics of Depression Study and researchers have released some of the preliminary data. Lead investigator Nick Martin at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute says the data highlights that current treatments are …

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Parenting With a Mental Illness

When you meet 34-year-old mother-of-two Narelle* for the first time, you’re not actually meeting her, but her ‘representative’ as she tells it. “She’s the one who laughs and smiles a lot and says all of the right things so that people walk away thinking what a capable and loving mother she is,” Narelle admits. “It’s not so bad when I only have to endure short interactions, but it makes things …

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“Everything I Wanted is Gone”: John Brogden’s Journey Through the Darkness

John Brogden spent his life working to become Premier of NSW – until a colossal fall from grace and a very public suicide attempt changed his life and priorities forever. Ahead of a visit to Adelaide, he talks to InDaily about his recovery, and his zeal to change public discourse around mental illness. “From as early as I can remember, I only ever wanted to do one thing, and that …

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Dads can suffer depression after childbirth too

No matter how many books you read, nothing really prepares you for the birth of your first child. And that goes for dads, as well as mums. Wilfred Zee, 31, from Queensland thought he was prepared before the whirlwind arrived. “We had a natural birth with our first child, Nathan, and didn’t realise anything was wrong until two days later. My wife was trying to get out of bed to …

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Screening and psychiatric follow-up in pre-dialysis patients

Authors: DG Straatsburg, MD FRANZP; EA Hoekman; R Smulders; JG Lijmer, MD PhD Organisation: OLVG Hospital, Amsterdam, The Netherlands Introduction Patients with end-stage renal failure disease (ESRD) are referred to our dialysis clinic for pre-dialysis work-up. In this retrospective study we examined the prevalence of psychiatric symptoms with the Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale (HADS 14 item questionnaire) and the added value of screening in this population by the number of …

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10 Things Everyone Should Know About Depression

It’s been two years since beloved actor Robin Williams died by suicide, and one major legacy of his passing has been a continued conversation about the serious effects of psychological and neurological disorders. While we’ll never know what factors and conditions led to Williams’ death, he suffered from Lewy body dementia, a brain condition that can cause hallucinations and mood changes, among other symptoms. But it was his experience with depression that really resonated with …

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Magnetic brain stimulation can help treat drug-resistant depression, study finds

John Campbell has depression. Diagnosed in 2011, the 58-year-old motor mechanic has been unable to work for two-and-a-half years. Next month he’ll return to the workplace, following successful treatment as part of a clinical trial into a non-invasive form of brain stimulation known as transcranial magnetic stimulation. According to the results of a new study, the once-controversial method of beaming magnetic fields into the frontal areas of the brain saw …

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Non-invasive treatment for depression and bipolar disorder investigated at Black Dog Institute

A new, non-invasive non-medication treatment for depression including bipolar disorder is now being trialled at the Black Dog Institute, University of NSW in Sydney. The Sydney Neurostimulation Centre led by Professor Colleen Loo is investigating whether transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) could be a treatment for depression and a potential alternative to medication and electroconvulsive therapy. TDCS is a very mild form of brain stimulation. The stimulation is painless and …

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Fathers may pass anxiety and depression to their children genetically, study finds

Men who are stressed can pass on anxiety and depression to their children and grandchildren, scientists in Australia have found, in a study which indicates parental advice has been “disproportionately” focused on the health and diet of women. The study, based on mice which were fed stress hormones, examined the behaviour of the first and second generations of offspring.  It found that the later generations – that had no contact with …

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Are antidepressants appropriate and effective for children?

Except for fluoxetine, antidepressants are ineffective in children and adolescents, according to findings from a systematic review involving four Australian mental health research centres. Fluoxetine is the only one of 14 antidepressants that performed better than placebo in reducing depressive symptoms, the review and network meta-analysis shows as reported by the Medical Observer. The study, involving 5260 patients aged from nine to 18 years in 34 randomised trials, was conducted …

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