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ORIGINAL ARTICLE   

Minerva Psychiatry 2021 December;62(4):209-15

DOI: 10.23736/S2724-6612.21.02129-1

Copyright © 2021 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Irritability, not sad low mood, predicts inattention in children and adolescents with major depressive disorder with and without persistent depressive disorder

Alasdair VANCE 1 , Jo WINTHER 2

1 Unit of Academic Child Psychiatry, Department of Pediatrics, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia; 2 Unit of Academic Child Psychiatry, Developmental Neuropsychiatry Program, Royal Children’s Hospital, Parkville, Australia



BACKGROUND: At present, the specific relationships between inattention and the two main components of depressed mood -sad low mood and irritability- have not been systematically examined in young people with major depressive disorder with and without persistent depressive disorder. The relationships are important to clarify because inattention may be independent of depressed and/or irritable mood and may mediate ongoing functional impairment in young people with these depressive disorders.
METHODS: Three hundred and thirteen medication naïve young people (aged 6-16 years) with active major depressive disorder (MDD) alone, persistent depressive disorder (DD) alone and comorbid active MDD and DD were identified. “Inattention,” “sad/unhappy,” and “irritable” mood were defined by parent standardized questionnaire. Standard multiple regression was used to investigate how well “sad/unhappy” and “irritable” mood predict “inattention.”
RESULTS: “Irritable” mood (9% of the variance increased) alone made an independent significant contribution to “inattention” while “sad/unhappy” mood did not.
CONCLUSIONS: Decreasing irritability via more targeted and comprehensive management approaches may ameliorate inattention in young people with these depressive disorders.


KEY WORDS: Depressive disorder, major; Depressive disorder; Irritability mood

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