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Late Life Depression

Late life depression

Major depression in the elderly, known as late life depression, has been under-diagnosed and under treated. People with late life depression include those who first had depression earlier in life (“early onset”) and those who never got depressed until late in life (“late-onset”). Late-age onset depression frequently occurs in patients with medical and neurological disorders. Compared to early onset depression, it is characterized by a greater occurrence of other medical illnesses, higher rates of abnormalities in brain studies compared with early-onset depression and in some studies, lower rates of treatment response. The key obstacle, however, in treating late life depression is the great reluctance of patients to seek treatment. There are many effective treatments for depression and therefore it is critical for families to get their loved one effective treatment that is best suited to their treatment needs.