Pediatric depressive disorders: Management priorities in primary care

Amy H. Cheung, Carolyn S Dewa, Anthony J. Levitt, Rachel A. Zuckerbrot

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Purpose of review: Depression is a common disorder that affects many youth. Although these youth are often managed in primary care, there is very little research or clinical guidance for primary care professionals to identify and manage depression in their pediatric patients. This review will examine the current evidence for the identification and management of pediatric depression in primary care. Recent findings: Several recent primary studies and knowledge syntheses support the identification and management of adolescent depression in primary care with less evidence addressing depression in prepubertal patients. Research evidence from specialty care confirms the efficacy of antidepressants and psychotherapies in adolescent depression. However, there is the possible risk of rare but serious adverse events, as outlined in the Food and Drug Administration's warning, when using antidepressants to treat these youth. Summary: Pediatric depression is often managed by primary care professionals. Several recent studies and reviews have been conducted to provide clinical guidance for the identification and management of depression in primary care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)551-559
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent Opinion in Pediatrics
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescents
  • Depression
  • Primary care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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