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Overcoming anxiety & depression together

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Information for Professionals       Diagnostic criteria and NICE guidelines      


According to the ICD-10 (WHO,1992), in typical depressive episodes the individual usually suffers from low mood, loss of interest and enjoyment, and reduced energy leading to increased fatigability and diminished activity. Marked tiredness after only slight effort is common. Other common symptoms are reduced concentration and attention, reduced self-esteem and self-confidence, ideas of guilt and unworthiness, bleak and pessimistic views of the future, ideas or acts of self-harm or suicide, disturbed sleep and diminished appetite.

The lowered mood varies little from day to day, and is often unresponsive to circumstances. A duration of at least 2 weeks is usually required for diagnosis, but shorter periods may be reasonable if symptoms are unusually severe and of rapid onset.

NICE (CG90, 2009) recommends a stepped care approach – click here for the current clinical guidelines.

The NICE guidelines for the treatment of depression in Patients with co-morbid physical health problems can  also be found by clicking here NICE guidelines CG91 (October 2009).

Standard Depression Assessment Measure:

TalkingSpace Plus uses the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ9) as a guide to the severity of depressive symptoms where:

0-4 = Remission

5-9 = Mild

10-14 = Moderate

15-19 = Moderately severe

20- 27 = Severe

For a printable version of the PHQ9 questionnaire, please click here.

Last updated: 8 July, 2013

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