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Jornal de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0021-7557On-line version ISSN 1678-4782


BAHLS, Saint-Clair. Depression in childhood and adolescence. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2002, vol.78, n.5, pp.359-366. ISSN 0021-7557.

Objective: this study reviews clinical features, evolution, comorbidity and suicidal behavior in childhood and adolescence depression. Its objective is to provide clear information on this common, severe and not very easily recognized pathology. Sources: literature searches were performed through Medline (1991-2000), with secondary-source follow-up. Summary of the findings: scientific concern about depression in childhood and adolescence is recent and up to the 70's depression was considered rare or inexistent in this period. Current diagnostic systems define as basic features of depression in children and adolescents are the same ones found in adults for major depression episodes; however, researches emphasize the significance of the developmental process in the clinical manifestations, with predominant features in each phase. Conclusions: nowadays, major depression in children and adolescents is understood to be a common, disabling and recurrent disease, with a high level of morbidity and mortality. It is an important public health problem.

Keywords : depression; childhood and adolescence; clinical features.

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