Ratings of Early Major Depressive Disorder Symptom Change During a Brief Psychiatric Hospitalization

Pettit, Jeremy; Averill, Patricia; Wassef, Adel; Gruber, Nelson; Schneider, Laurie
March 2005
Psychiatric Quarterly;Mar2005, Vol. 76 Issue 1, p33
Academic Journal
Ratings of change in MDD severity during a brief psychiatric hospitalization were examined across informant sources to determine the extent of change from admission to discharge and if specific symptoms are especially likely to change. Study participants were 137 inpatients with a primary diagnosis of MDD. Symptom data were collected at admission and discharge from attending psychiatrists, nurses, and patients. Global ratings of MDD severity and specific MDD symptoms significantly decreased during the course of hospitalization. This effect held across informant sources. All symptoms were equally likely to change. Females were rated as more depressed at admission and discharge by psychiatrists, but no gender differences were seen in self-report or nurse ratings. Shorter length of stay and involuntary admission status were associated with greater reduction in MDD severity. The temporal course and magnitude of the symptom reduction may result in part from unique aspects of an inpatient setting or from an underreporting of symptoms. The association between a shorter length of stay and greater symptom reduction may reflect a distinction between treatment responders and nonresponders.


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