May 12, 2014 – Depression and Outcome
ANCHOR LEAD: WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU’RE DEPRESSED PRIOR TO SURGERY? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Only 10% of surgeons surveyed routinely screen their patients for depression and other mental health conditions prior to surgery, even though professional guidelines recommend they do so. That’s according to Johns Hopkins research led by Richard Skolasky.
SKOLASKY: Part of the research I do here is identifying people who don’t take an active role in their care, so have a low level of patient activation, and primarily that has to do with their confidence to manage their condition, and to try to move those people along the continuum of patient activation prior to surgery so that they can reap the benefits more fully. It’s much more than just depression, and I think that’s why it’s important that you have someone that’s trained in mental health assessment and treatment as part of the team, and those were the recommendations of the US Preventive Health Services Task Force. :34
Skolasky says patients who are having elective procedures should ask for such an evaluation if they aren’t given one, since depression as well as other mental health conditions are known to impact recovery. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.