JOURNAL ARTICLE
PRACTICE GUIDELINE
RESEARCH SUPPORT, U.S. GOV'T, P.H.S.
SYSTEMATIC REVIEW
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Screening for Depression and Suicide Risk in Children and Adolescents: US Preventive Services Task Force Recommendation Statement.

JAMA 2022 October 19
IMPORTANCE: Depression is a leading cause of disability in the US. Children and adolescents with depression typically have functional impairments in their performance at school or work as well as in their interactions with their families and peers. Depression can also negatively affect the developmental trajectories of affected youth. Major depressive disorder (MDD) in children and adolescents is strongly associated with recurrent depression in adulthood; other mental disorders; and increased risk for suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, and suicide completion. Suicide is the second-leading cause of death among youth aged 10 to 19 years. Psychiatric disorders and previous suicide attempts increase suicide risk.

OBJECTIVE: To update its 2014 and 2016 recommendations, the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) commissioned a systematic review to evaluate the benefits and harms of screening, accuracy of screening, and benefits and harms of treatment of MDD and suicide risk in children and adolescents that would be applicable to primary care settings.

POPULATION: Children and adolescents who do not have a diagnosed mental health condition or are not showing recognized signs or symptoms of depression or suicide risk.

EVIDENCE ASSESSMENT: The USPSTF concludes with moderate certainty that screening for MDD in adolescents aged 12 to 18 years has a moderate net benefit. The USPSTF concludes that the evidence is insufficient on screening for MDD in children 11 years or younger. The USPSTF concludes that the evidence is insufficient on the benefit and harms of screening for suicide risk in children and adolescents owing to a lack of evidence.

RECOMMENDATION: The USPSTF recommends screening for MDD in adolescents aged 12 to 18 years. (B recommendation) The USPSTF concludes that the current evidence is insufficient to assess the balance of benefits and harms of screening for MDD in children 11 years or younger. (I statement) The USPSTF concludes that the current evidence is insufficient to assess the balance of benefits and harms of screening for suicide risk in children and adolescents. (I statement).

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