Elderly Depression: Medicine or Advice

By: Tracie Potts
By: Tracie Potts

The highest rates of depression in the U.S. are being seen among the elderly, especially those with medical problems.

People suffering from depression are generally treated with either medication or counseling, and doctors say both treatments are equally effective.

But a new UCLA study shows while many prefer counseling, they are more likely to get the pill. Psychologists say, just taking the pill may not be enough because it does not increase the patient's ability to learn and remember.

Researchers say at least 2 out of 3 elderly patients are not getting effective treatment. The study also shows that African-Americans, Latinos and elderly men are least likely to receive any treatment at all.

The UCLA study also found that teaming up the patient's regular doctor with a mental health professional could double the effectiveness of depression treatment among the elderly.


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