In cases were the depression was a side effectof some form of illness, physicians found that using depression medicationsto treat the depression, also helped to treat the illness.
But if depression can complicate physical illness, it can also be the solereason for a wide variety of symptoms that resemble those of physical ailments.
In a four-year study, doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, foundfatigue the single most frequent depression symptom of patients diagnosed asdepressed.
Sometimes the patients felt so exhausted they couldn't go through their dailyroutine.
Yet at the same time they reported they couldn't sleep well.
They woulddoze off, and then wake up early in the morning and toss for hours.
In fact,any sudden tendency to wake up very early can be one of the cardinal signs ofdepression.
Headaches are another common symptom.
In studying 421 patients with depression,physicians found that 84 per cent complained of headache.
Depressive headachesare capricious, aren't limited to one area, tend to be worse in the morningthan in the evening and often resist all ordinary remedies.
But once recognizedfor what they are, they can be relieved with specific antidepressant medicationtreatments for depression [http://www.
It was also found that 75 per cent of the depressed patients in the test lostweight - from five to 20 pounds.
Other symptoms included breathing difficulty,dizziness, weakness, urinary disturbance, palpitation, nausea.
In a recent seminarto alert family doctors to the guises emotional troubles can take, a Harvardpsychiatrist, warned that "depression symptoms are frequently referredto the gastrointestinal tract," and urged a check for depression when patientscomplained of gas or abdominal pains that couldn't be explained otherwise.
Healso warned that depression sometimes caused reduced potency in men and menstrualdisturbance in women.
Nobody knows how many elderly people considered hopelessly senile are reallyonly depressed.
The signs of depression [http://www.
org]of the geriatric patient often remain undiagnosed.
There is the feeling thathe is too senile to be depressed.
Actually, depressions can contribute to oreven cause senile confusion.