It’s been known among those who study such things that being skeptical of the “gene model” or “biological model” of what I’ll refer to as psychiatric illness is, perhaps, very prudent of late. It’s not so much prudent now as the solid way to go with this new research. Read it for yourself, by all means. In what follows, I draw some of my own extra-study conclusions. Keep in mind, I only hold a BA in psychology and have done cursory grad-level research in psychiatry and philosophy of psychiatry. I welcome those whose expertise is beyond mine.
I want to begin by saying this is a day people with a diagnosis of depression should rejoice. Pretty soon, they may not even have that diagnosis anymore, as these findings give rise to potentially new ways of thinking about psychiatry. As a matter of fact, one of the conclusions of this study is that doctors, including psychiatrists, actually stop their current practice of diagnosis and go straight to individual symptoms a patient may experience.
The result of this finding is that drug therapies currently in place for depression may cease to exist as we now know them. Other drugs–say, to treat fatigue or failure to eat–may be applied instead. The reason for this is that drugs currently in place assume some hard, solid thing that exists in the world which is depression. Yet, this major study shows there is no such thing.
We may, additionally, rely more upon psychotherapies when treating symptoms of psychiatric diagnosis instead of drugs. This is because drugs in place assume a bio-based cause of depression.
I can, of course, go further in my extrapolations: Because similar historical research has been done on psychiatric diagnoses other than depression, we may need to revamp the entire industry, giving rise to other newer and better treatments.
In short, if there’s any a day it’s good to have the diagnosis of depression (or any psychiatric diagnosis), it’s today.