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BMJ debates diagnosis of depression

The current issue of the British Medical Journal debates the over-diagnosis of depression in a "Head to Head".

Gordon Parker, from the School of Psychiatry at the University of New South Wales, argues that depression is over-diagnosed. He points out that current thresholds in diagnostic criteria are too low and therefore medicalise normal human emotional states.

Ian Hickie, from the Brain and Mind Research Institute at the University of Sydney, argues that depression is not over-diagnosed. He points out that the increased rate of diagnosis of depression in the last 15 years has reduced suicides and increased productivity.

Action: Clinicians who diagnose and treat patients with depression will find this debate an interesting read.