Major Depressive Disorder is one of the most common mental disorders suffered by people within the United States. According to the 2015 National Survey of Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) published by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), approximately 16.1 million adults 18 years of age and older experienced at least one major depressive episode in the past year. That’s 6.1% of the entire adult U.S population! As defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV), to be diagnosed as suffering from Major Depressive Disorder, an individual must evidence “a change in previous functioning lasting a period of at least two weeks during which time there is either depressed mood or a loss of interest or pleasure in nearly all activities”.
Much still remains unknown and controversial regarding the underlying causes and neurochemical/neurophysiological changes that either predispose people to develop Major Depressive Disorder in the first place or to continue to linger in a depressed state for protracted periods of time. One of the key questions medical science has been wrestling with is which comes first … a specific brain architecture or neurochemical abnormality that predisposes certain people to develop Major Depressive Disorder or the environment and the behavioral reactions certain people have to it that cause long-lasting changes in the brain that self perpetuate the symptomatology characteristic of Major Depressive Disorder. Likely it is an interplay of the two. Regardless of which comes first – the chicken or the egg – a great deal still needs to be learned about the cause(s) of Major Depressive Disorder and how best to go about obtaining reliable, long-lasting relief.
Fortunately, for people living in the New York Metropolitan Area, there are a number of medical institutions and facilities where specialist are conducting cutting edge research on this disorder. If you are someone who remains unsatisfied with the treatment options currently available or someone simply wishing to help advance medical science’s understanding of this disorder, you might consider volunteering to participate in one of these clinical research studies. SPRI Clinical Trials is one such institution that conducts Depression Research Studies Brooklyn. To learn more about what’s involved in participating in a clinical research study or to learn whether you might be eligible to participate, call SPRI at 718-626-2400 or visit them on the web at spribrooklyn.com.