Social networks of patients with chronic depression: A systematic review.
571 - 578
J Affect Disord
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INTRODUCTION AND AIM: The social networks of patients are an important factor for the prognosis of mental disorders and can be potentially targeted through psycho-social interventions. We aimed to explore these networks in patients with chronic depression, by conducting a systematic review on the characteristics of social networks in this patient group. METHODS: Six databases, three key journals and grey literature were searched. Two reviewers screened the articles, assessed the risk of bias and extracted the information needed. Findings were descriptively synthesised. RESULTS: Nineteen articles met the inclusion criteria reporting the findings of a total of 873 patients with chronic depression. Four papers presented results without a comparison group (six in comparison to a healthy population, eight to patients with non-chronic major depression and three to patients with other mental disorders). Social networks of patients with chronic depression appeared to be smaller than those of healthy individuals, patients with non-chronic major depression and other disorders. LIMITATIONS: Studies used different concepts of chronic depression and inconsistent methodologies for assessing social networks. Only three studies adopted objective measures. CONCLUSIONS: Whilst the evidence on social networks of patients with chronic depression is limited, the networks appear smaller than in most comparison groups, including patients with non-chronic depression.
AuthorsVisentini, C; Cassidy, M; Bird, VJ; Priebe, S
- Centre for Psychiatry