More than half the people who are taking a powerful antidepressant aren't getting any help from the drug - and that's because doctors still work with two assumptions about depression that are false, researchers have said this week.
Medicine has an overly simplified view of depression, and still believes that:
o a stressful life causes depression;
o depression is triggered by an 'imbalance' in the brain.
Both beliefs are false, say researchers from the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, and that's why antidepressants don't work. They are trying to remedy a cause that doesn't exist. As a result, antidepressants almost never hit the bull's eye, say the researchers.
One of the researchers, Eva Redei, has told the Neuroscience annual conference in Chicago that new research will eventually lead to drugs that more successfully counter the true causes of depression, which she believes is associated with the development and functioning of neurons.
(Source: Neuroscience 2009, Chicago, October 27, 2009).