Psychologie & NeuroPsychiatrie du vieillissement


Évaluation de la dépression chez le sujet âgé Volume 2, supplement 1, Supplément, septembre 2004

Clinique psychiatrique universitaire, Tours camus@med.univ‐tours.fr

Depressive symptoms are frequent in old age. They are associated with several types of mental disorders : major depression, bipolar disorder, dysthymia, organic mood disorder, mixed anxious and depressive disorder. Various types of assessment tools can help to evaluate depressive symptomatology in the elderly: self administered questionnaires, observer ratings, standardised interviews. All are helpful in the clinical approach of depressive states. Self‐administered questionnaires are the best tools for a systematic brief screening for depression, while observer ratings will be used for a quantification of depressive symptomatology in the follow up or to evaluate the efficacy of therapeutic interventions. Lastly, standardised interview are mostly used in research protocols, taking advantage of their high specificity. For the assessment of depression as one of the behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia, multidimensional tools like the NPI, or unidimensional instruments like the Cornell scale for depression will be preferred.