A password will be e-mailed to you.

Flawed Research Methods Exaggerate Prevalence of Depression

Summary: Researchers report the common practice of using patients self report screenings, rather than diagnostic interviews, may be misrepresentational of the actual prevalence of depression.

Source: Canadian Medical Association Journal.

The common practice of using patient self-report screening questionnaires rather than diagnostic interviews conducted by researchers has resulted in overestimates of the prevalence of depression, according to an analysis in CMAJ.

“These studies misrepresent the actual rate of depression, sometimes dramatically, which makes it very difficult to direct the right resources to problems faced by patients,” said Dr. Brett Thombs of the Lady Davis Institute of the Jewish General Hospital and McGill University, the study’s lead author. “Self-report questionnaires are meant to be used as an initial assessment to cast a wide net and identify people who may be struggling with mental health issues. However, we need to conduct a more thorough evaluation in order to determine an appropriate diagnosis and whether there may be other issues to address.”

The authors suggest that researchers often use self-report questionnaires because diagnostic interviews are time-consuming and expensive to administer.

“In addition,” said Thombs, “Studies with dramatic results tend to be accepted by higher impact journals and attract more attention from the public than studies with more modest findings. This may also encourage some researchers to report results from questionnaires rather than conducting appropriate diagnostic interviews.”

The authors suggest that researchers often use self-report questionnaires because diagnostic interviews are time-consuming and expensive to administer. NeuroscienceNews.com image is in the public domain.

“Addressing overestimation of the prevalence of depression based on self-report screening questionnaires” is published January 15, 2018.

About this neuroscience research article

Source: Kim Barnhardt – Canadian Medical Association Journal
Publisher: Organized by NeuroscienceNews.com.
Image Source: NeuroscienceNews.com image is in the public domain.
Original Research: The study will appear in CMAJ.

Cite This NeuroscienceNews.com Article
Canadian Medical Association Journal “Flawed Research Methods Exaggerate Prevalence of Depression.” NeuroscienceNews. NeuroscienceNews, 15 January 2018.
<http://neurosciencenews.com/depression-prevalence-research-8314/>.
Canadian Medical Association Journal (2018, January 15). Flawed Research Methods Exaggerate Prevalence of Depression. NeuroscienceNews. Retrieved January 15, 2018 from http://neurosciencenews.com/depression-prevalence-research-8314/
Canadian Medical Association Journal “Flawed Research Methods Exaggerate Prevalence of Depression.” http://neurosciencenews.com/depression-prevalence-research-8314/ (accessed January 15, 2018).
Feel free to share this Neuroscience News.
Join our Newsletter
Sign up to receive the latest neuroscience headlines and summaries sent to your email daily from NeuroscienceNews.com
We hate spam. Your email address will not be sold or shared with anyone else.
No more articles
%d bloggers like this: