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Take care of Depression among medical students!!

Medical students with moderate to severe depression more frequently endorsed several depression stigma attitudes than nondepressed students and had a higher rate of suicidal thoughts, according to a study in the September 15 issue of JAMA, a theme issue on medical education.

"Medical students experience depression, burnout, and mental illness at a higher rate than the general population, with mental health deteriorating over the course of medical training. Medical students have a higher risk of suicidal ideation and suicide, higher rates of burnout, and a lower quality of life than age-matched populations," the authors write. They add that medical students are less likely than the general population to receive appropriate treatment, perhaps because of the stigma associated with depression. "Students may worry that revealing their depression will make them less competitive for residency training positions or compromise their education, and physicians may be reluctant to disclose their diagnosis on licensure and medical staff applications."

Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D., of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and colleagues conducted a study to assess the prevalence of self-reported depression and suicidal ideation among medical students and to assess the perceptions of depression stigma by both depressed and nondepressed students. In September-November 2009, the researchers surveyed all students enrolled at the University of Michigan Medical School (n = 769). The survey response rate was 65.7 percent (505 of 769).

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