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      Close, but not close enough: Brazilian norms for the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9)


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          The PHQ-9: validity of a brief depression severity measure.

          While considerable attention has focused on improving the detection of depression, assessment of severity is also important in guiding treatment decisions. Therefore, we examined the validity of a brief, new measure of depression severity. The Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ) is a self-administered version of the PRIME-MD diagnostic instrument for common mental disorders. The PHQ-9 is the depression module, which scores each of the 9 DSM-IV criteria as "0" (not at all) to "3" (nearly every day). The PHQ-9 was completed by 6,000 patients in 8 primary care clinics and 7 obstetrics-gynecology clinics. Construct validity was assessed using the 20-item Short-Form General Health Survey, self-reported sick days and clinic visits, and symptom-related difficulty. Criterion validity was assessed against an independent structured mental health professional (MHP) interview in a sample of 580 patients. As PHQ-9 depression severity increased, there was a substantial decrease in functional status on all 6 SF-20 subscales. Also, symptom-related difficulty, sick days, and health care utilization increased. Using the MHP reinterview as the criterion standard, a PHQ-9 score > or =10 had a sensitivity of 88% and a specificity of 88% for major depression. PHQ-9 scores of 5, 10, 15, and 20 represented mild, moderate, moderately severe, and severe depression, respectively. Results were similar in the primary care and obstetrics-gynecology samples. In addition to making criteria-based diagnoses of depressive disorders, the PHQ-9 is also a reliable and valid measure of depression severity. These characteristics plus its brevity make the PHQ-9 a useful clinical and research tool.
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            Clinical diagnosis of depression in primary care: a meta-analysis.

            Depression is a major burden for the health-care system worldwide. Most care for depression is delivered by general practitioners (GPs). We assessed the rate of true positives and negatives, and false positives and negatives in primary care when GPs make routine diagnoses of depression. We undertook a meta-analysis of 118 studies that assessed the accuracy of unassisted diagnoses of depression by GPs. 41 of these studies were included because they had a robust outcome standard of a structured or semi-structured interview. 50 371 patients were pooled across 41 studies and examined. GPs correctly identified depression in 47.3% (95% CI 41.7% to 53.0%) of cases and recorded depression in their notes in 33.6% (22.4% to 45.7%). 19 studies assessed both rule-in and rule-out accuracy; from these studies, the weighted sensitivity was 50.1% (41.3% to 59.0%) and specificity was 81.3% (74.5% to 87.3%). At a rate of 21.9%, the positive predictive value was 42.0% (39.6% to 44.3%) and the negative predictive value was 85.8% (84.8% to 86.7%). This finding suggests that for every 100 unselected cases seen in primary care, there are more false positives (n=15) than either missed (n=10) or identified cases (n=10). Accuracy was improved with prospective examination over an extended period (3-12 months) rather than relying on a one-off assessment or case-note records. GPs can rule out depression in most people who are not depressed; however, the modest prevalence of depression in primary care means that misidentifications outnumber missed cases. Diagnosis could be improved by re-assessment of individuals who might have depression. None.
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              A nationwide population-based study of depression in Brazil.

              The state of mental health of the population is considered to be an important and essential component of public health. Depression is the mental disorder with greatest prevalence in several countries around the world.

                Author and article information

                Braz J Psychiatry
                Braz J Psychiatry
                Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry
                Associação Brasileira de Psiquiatria
                12 June 2023
                Jul-Aug 2023
                : 45
                : 4
                : 304-305
                [1 ]Instituto e Departamento de Psiquiatria, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
                [2 ]Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas, Departamento de Farmacologia, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Yuan-Pang Wang, Instituto e Departamento de Psiquiatria, Hospital das Clínicas HCFMUSP, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de São Paulo, Rua Dr. Ovídio Pires de Campos, 785, CEP 05403-010,São Paulo, SP, Brazil. E-mail: gnap_inbox@ 123456hotmail.com
                Author information

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                : 26 April 2023
                : 26 April 2023


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