Thursday, August 21, 2008


What is depression?

Just like a rash or heart disease, depression can take many forms. Definitions of depression and the therapies designed to ease this disease's grip continue to evolve. These shifts will continue to percolate through the field as more research flows in.
This special report addresses three main categories of depression:
major depression
dysthymia (a lasting, low-level depression)
bipolar disorder, previously called manic-depressive illness.

These terms don't begin to describe the tremendous variation in people's experiences of depression. Still, while the labels sometimes seem overly simple, they do help clinicians and researchers study depression and exchange information about its various forms.

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