Major depression with psychotic features - Treatment
Psychotic depression; Delusional depression
Psychotic depression requires immediate medical care and treatment.
Treatment usually involves antidepressant and antipsychotic medication. You may only need antipsychotic medication for a short period of time.
Electroconvulsive therapy can help treat depression with psychotic symptoms. However, medication is usually tried first.
This is a serious condition that requires immediate treatment and close monitoring by a doctor. You may need to take medication for a long time to prevent the depression from coming back. Depression symptoms are more likely to return than the psychotic symptoms.
The risk of suicide is much higher in people with depresison with psychotic symptoms than in those without psychosis. You may need to stay in the hospital if you have thoughts of suicide. The safety of others must also be considered.
Calling your health care provider:
If you have thoughts of suicide or harming yourself or others, immediate call your local emergency number (such as 911) or go to the hospital emergency room.
You may also call a suicide hotline from anywhere in the United States, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week: 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-999-9999.
Call your doctor right away if:
- You hear voices that are not there.
- You have frequent crying spells with little or no reason.
- Your depression is disrupting work, school, or family life.
- You think that your current medications are not working or are causing side effects. Never change or stop any medications without consulting your doctor.
- Reviewed last on: 2/24/2011
- Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine; David B. Merrill, MD, Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
Fava M, Cassano P. Mood disorders: Major depressive disorder and dysthymic disorder. In: Stern TA, Rosenbaum JF, Fava M, Biederman J, Rauch SL, eds. Massachusetts General Hospital Comprehensive Clinical Psychiatry. 1st ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2008:chap 29.
American Psychiatric Association. Practice guideline for the treatment of patients with major depressive disorder, third edition. Arlington (VA): American Psychiatric Association; 2010 Oct. 152 p.
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