Depression: distress or disease? Some epidemiological considerations.
G W Brown, T K Craig, T O Harris


Surveys using clinical-type interviews have documented a high rate of depression among working-class women, and this is discussed in the light of a recent survey in an inner-city area. While women with caseness of depression contacting a psychiatrist did not differ in number of core depressive symptoms from those who did, they did in certain characteristics that would make them worrying for a general practitioner to deal with. It is concluded that there is a considerable overlap in the severity of depressive conditions between those seen by psychiatrists and those defined as cases in population surveys; any differences that do exist may relate more to the way symptoms are expressed than to the severity of the depressive disorder as such.