A systematic overview of measurement-based care in the treatment of childhood and adolescent depression.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is one of the most prevalent psychiatric disorders affecting children and adolescents. The significant psychiatric, social, and functional impairments associated with this disorder coupled with the high incidence of relapse indicate a need for continued efforts to enhance treatment. Current empirically supported treatments for childhood and adolescent MDD include psychotropic medications, psychotherapy, and a combination of both treatments, with selection of the most appropriate strategy depending on symptom severity. One strategy to enhance treatment outcome is the use of measurement-based care. This article provides a systematic review of measurement-based care in the treatment of childhood and adolescent MDD. It also presents a comprehensive analysis of widely used depression rating scales and discusses their utility in clinical practice. This review found evidence supporting the utility and benefit of depression rating scales to document depression severity in children and adolescents. We also found evidence suggesting that many of these scales are time efficient, and that both clinician-rated and self-rated scales provide accurate assessment of depressive symptomatology. Future research is warranted to examine the utility of measurement-based care in clinical practice with child and adolescent populations.
Elmquist, JM; Melton, TK; Croarkin, P; McClintock, SM
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